Crime on region's railways falls

CRIME on the region's railways has plummeted by 12 per cent, figures from the British Transport Police revealed today.

CRIME on the region's railways has plummeted by 12 per cent, figures from the British Transport Police revealed today.

The force has overseen reductions in almost every category, including criminal damage, vehicle and cycle crime, and theft of passenger property.

Meanwhile, robberies on trains are down by 40pc compared with the previous 12 months, the third year in a row in which they have fallen.

Along with a drop in the overall number of recorded offences, detections are up on last year from 3,507 to 3,633 - a 3.6pc increase.

The figures relate to criminal activity in East Anglia, Essex, north London and the northern Home Counties - known as the London North Area.

Chief superintendent Mark Newton, London North Area commander, said: “These are a fantastic set of results, which is good news for passengers and staff and a testament to the continued hard work and dedication of our officers, police staff and our industry partners across the area.

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“Our progress in dealing with robberies is something I am particularly pleased with.

“Over the last three years we have seen a sustained reduction in the number of offences committed.

“The number of robberies has dropped from 537 to 322 which is a reassuring sign to passengers and rail staff.”

British Transport Police have a dedicated robbery squad based at Stratford, which, chf supt Newton said, had been instrumental in bringing offenders to justice.

Criminal damage offences have dropped for the second year running, with a 19pc reduction, while sexual offences have dropped by more than 16pc.

Theft of passenger property has fallen by 14pc, and motor vehicle and cycle crime is down by almost 19pc.

Chf supt Newton admitted anti-social behaviour and low-level disorder remained a significant issue and a key concern to police.

“Passengers and rail staff shouldn't have to endure abusive behaviour, intimidation or threats of violence,” he said.

“We will continue to work hard with our industry partners to tackle anti-social behaviour where it occurs.”

Do you feel safe on our railways? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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