David Hanson MP, Labour’s Shadow Policing Minister, commenting on the crime statistics today, said:
“The continued downward trend in crime, which has been going on for well over a decade now, emphasises the good work police have been doing for a number of years now.
“There are warning signs for the police and Home Office, with the increase in theft. And earlier this week the British Retail Consortium’s Survey showed an increase of over 15 per cent in the cost of retail crime alongside a drop in the proportion of crime reported by retailers to the police from 48 per cent to 16 per cent.
“This is perhaps why the Office for National Statistics has begun to express concern that apparent reductions in police recorded crime may be exaggerated.
“The Home Secretary should examine urgently whether, as the ONS suggest, the cuts to police budgets mark a return to fewer crimes being recorded by the police.
“I welcome the independent Crime Statistics Advisory Committee looking into this, but this should also be looked at by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary. Both should report rapidly so we can have confidence in crime figures instead of more questions being raised."<div>