Radical change needed in handling of rape cases, says England and Wales police lead

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NPCC lead for rape says specialist capability was damaged during austerity years

Crack teams of specialist police officers are needed to bring rapists to justice and prevent a wholesale collapse of public confidence in the criminal justice system, according to the police lead for rape in England and Wales.

Rape prosecutions have fallen to a record low, following a historic collapse in the number of police referrals, charges and convictions in rape cases, which critics argue amounts to the “decriminalisation” of rape. The situation is so dire that a radical reassessment of how sexual assault crimes are dealt with is needed, according to DCI Sara Crew.

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