Thank you for your e-mail of 21 June 2017 in which you requested the following information under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA):
"1) The number of occasions on which translation services have been employed by the service during the years 2015, 2016 and to June 2017, broken down by date, reason for translator being required and language.
2) A breakdown of all monies paid to translation services by the services on a year-by-year basis for the timescale stated above."
I can firstly advise that COPFS employs such services to translate case related documents. The services cover documents and tapes and other forms of electronic media in the course of case proceedings. This is all done in terms of the Interpreting, Translation and Transcription Framework Agreement negotiated by the Scottish Government. Details of this framework can be found on the Scottish Government web-site at http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Government/Procurement/directory/pscontractcentgovt/InterpretingTranslation
In relation to your request for the number of individual occasions, dates and language, the electronic records maintained by our Finance Department accurately reflect financial transactions in relation to translation services provided to COPFS however these records do not electronically detail the individual services, specific date of the service, or the language involved. More than one service may be detailed on one invoice. In order to ascertain this information a member of COPFS staff would be required to perform a manual review of all invoices relating to translation services. As there are over 2,000 financial records involved in 2015 alone, I hope you will appreciate that in this instance the costs of locating, retrieving and providing the information requested would exceed the upper cost limit of £600. Under Section 12 of FOISA public authorities are not required to comply with a request for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying would exceed the upper cost limit, which is currently set at £600 by Regulations made under Section 12.
While we are unable to provide the information you have requested in relation to numbers, dates, language and reason from our own records, you may be interested to know that COPFS receive monthly reports from our translation service providers which detail the services they have recorded as being provided to COPFS. I have extracted the date, the relevant language and the type of material for translation to answer your request for the reason for translation from these monthly reports commencing January 2015 up to and including the most recent report dated April 2017. You should be aware that these reports are provided to COPFS for information only and whilst COPFS may use them to verify transactions, we are unable to do so in relation to a Freedom of Information request as to do this from our own records would exceed the upper cost limit as explained above.
At point 2) you have requested a breakdown of the monies paid for translation services on a year by year basis over the timescale of your request and this information is provided in the table below. I must again highlight that these payments were made against invoices received from our service providers and not as a result of the monthly report.
I hope you find the information I have provided to be helpful.
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