Technology roll-out will boost criminal justice IT

Broadband technology would significantly improve the transfer of data around the criminal justice system's beleaguered IT...

Broadband technology would significantly improve the transfer of data around the criminal justice system's beleaguered IT networks, said Tony Crimmens, deputy chief constable of Northumbria and a director of the Police IT Organisation.

Crimmens welcomed the Government's plans to aggregate public sector demand for broadband.

"Broadband is clearly the future for criminal justice IT networks. Things that are difficult to move round networks at the moment, such as complex diagrams and colour, broadband makes possible," he said.

The technology could also enable courts and prisons to communicate via videoconference, said Crimmens.

"This could eventually lead, for instance, to a reduced number of [prisoner] transfers between prisons and magistrates courts," he said.

The UK's criminal justice system, which encompasses the police, the Crown Prosecution Service, criminal courts, the Prison Service and the Probation Service, has often attracted criticism for its lack of "joined-up IT".

The Government has announced funding of almost £1bn over the next three years to create an integrated case management system for the criminal justice network.

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