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Anti-rape campaigners voiced alarm yesterday after it emerged Scottish police had dismissed almost 1,000 reported rapes as “no crime.”
Figures revealed on Monday show that some forces gave up on as many as one in three cases of reported rape, despite already-low prosecution rates and promises to make rape a high priority.
Around 41 per cent of crimes against women in the past four years went uninvestigated and in the former Grampian force area, a third of rapes reported were marked “no crime.”
Even when incidents were recorded as a crime, 36 per cent remain unsolved, the BBC’s Scotland 2014 show revealed.
Official figures show that between 2012 and 2013, police in Scotland filed 1,372 reports of rape and 90 of attempted rape.
Yet just 138 cases proceeded to prosecution in the same period — and 42 per cent were acquitted as not guilty or not proven, despite estimated rates of false allegations running at between 0.6 and 3 per cent.
Rape Crisis Scotland’s Sandy Brindley said it was already “very difficult” for survivors to report their experience.
“No matter where somebody is in Scotland, they should be able to have confidence that if they report it, it will be treated seriously and they will be treated with sensitivity and respect,” she said.
Police Scotland detective superintendent Louise Raphael of the National Rape Task Force conceded that under-reporting was “unacceptably high.”
But there were “many reasons why crimes that are initially recorded as rape are either subsequently marked no crime or are reclassified as an alternative crime following investigation.”
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