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Soham-inspired intelligence plan under review

UK gov't reviews police data sharing scheme

UK Home Office ministers are reviewing the future of a police intelligence sharing system recommended in the wake of the murder of two schoolgirls in Soham in 2002.

The creation of the Impact programme to ensure intelligence could be passed between police forces in different parts of the country was a key recommendation of the Bichard inquiry into the deaths of Jessica Chapman and Holly Wells.

But the Home Office has confirmed that the delivery of Impact is under review “to ensure delivery that reflects the long-term needs of the police service and represents the best value investment”.

A Home Office spokesperson said: “Recommendations have been made to the minister about the future of Crisp” - the £25.2 million Cross-regional information sharing project that is a core part of the Impact programme.

She added: “The minister will review these recommendations and make a decision based on assurances from the programme that any option taken will not compromise child protection.”

The Home Office refused to confirm whether or not procurement for the Crisp scheme had been halted. Ministers would “update parliament in due course”, the spokesperson said.

Any changes to the Impact programme would be designed to ensure delivery of the planned Police National Database in 2010 would not be compromised, she added.

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