Hate crimes under the spotlight

HATE crime cases in Suffolk - which include domestic violence and racially motivated attacks - have come under the spotlight in a new initiative.

HATE crime cases in Suffolk - which include domestic violence and racially motivated attacks - have come under the spotlight in a new initiative.

The Crown Prosecution Service will now cross-examine itself with the help of the community to ensure that it is correctly dealing with the offences.

These also include cases in which offenders have been convicted of crimes against homosexuals and transsexuals and cases involving religion and disabilities.

From April to June the CPS prosecuted 219 hate crimes, of which 27 were unsuccessful and did not result in a conviction.

The service has now set up a dedicated scrutiny panel - to meet four times a year and study a random sample of cases - to ensure that the way in which they are handled is open and transparent.

Panel members include representatives from Babergh Domestic Violence and Abuse Forum, Waveney Women's Health Information Centre, Adult Community Services and St Edmundsbury Borough Council.