Section 60 Authorisations (188A/22)
I would like to know:
Every occasion West Midlands Police has used Section 60 powers allowing them to search anyone without suspicion since the start of 2017 and where they were used (town/city/area).
I would also like to know:
The total number of people searched each time Section 60 was used and of those searched, a breakdown of how many were white, black or Asian.
I would like the information provided separately for each year and details to be provided separately for each time Section 60 was used.
If I was to refine my request to Section 60 stop and searches since the start of 2021, would that help achieve a result?
Unfortunately, our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide all of this information within the appropriate (cost) limit within the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (see ‘Reason for Decision’ below).
However, although excess cost removes the force’s obligations under the Freedom of Information Act, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information, relative to your request, retrieved before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded (see attached file 188A_22_attachment.xlsx). It should also be noted that the Neighbourhood is only available from 2019, when we moved over to a new system. However, Neighbourhood Policing Unit has been provided for all cases. I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of the request.
REASON FOR DECISION
Although we have been able to retrieve from our systems, details with regard to stop and searches under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order (CJPO) Act 1994 (see attached as per above), it is not possible to determine precisely which S60 Authorisation they relate to, without manually reviewing every case. Such a search however, even from 2021 alone (360 cases), would exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12).
This means that the cost of compliance with the whole of your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12(1) of the FOI Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.
Further information on section 12 of FOI is available here: