Crime, Latest News | Posted: Wednesday, October 14th, 2020 at 1:39 pm | return to news

Proportion of hate crime cases getting increased sentences at all time high

The Crown Prosecution Service has revealed that the proportion of those convicted of a hate crime who were given a tougher sentence is higher than ever.

Max Hill
Max Hill

The figures were revealed at the start of National Hate Crime Awareness Week (NHCAW), which runs between 10-17 October.

In convicted cases where the prosecution applied to the court for a sentence increase to take account of the hate aspect of the crime, it was granted in 77.5 per cent of cases, compared to 73.6 per cent last year. This is a marked increase from 2007/08 when was just 2.3 per cent.

Max Hill QC, the Director of Public Prosecutions, said, “All crime has a terrible impact on victims but hate crime is especially nasty because it targets people for who they are. It has no place in today’s Britain.

“I support the excellent work done during National Hate Crime Awareness Week and all year round and encourage anyone who has been a victim or witnessed a hate crime to report it to the police.

“As prosecutors we will take cases to court and apply for higher sentences to take account of the hostility that drove offenders. It won’t undo the harm done but victims can be reassured that the justice system is working as it should.”

In the 12 months to March 2020, the CPS prosecuted 10,950 hate crime cases in England and Wales. The conviction rate was 9,340 cases – more than 85 per cent.

An offence, for example assault, damage to property or theft, is classed as a hate crime if it is motivated by hostility towards someone’s race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or disability.

The CPS works with local organisations to co-ordinate activities to combat hate crime. All prosecutors are given training on hate crimes to better identify the issues unique to those offences. During NHCAW the CPS is running events to showcase how it is improving the way hate crimes are prosecuted.

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