Knife and gun crime in London rises 20% in a year.
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Knife and gun crime in London rises 20% in a year.

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Knife and gun crime in London increased by around a fifth last year, according to government statistics.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), police in the city registered 14,626 knife crimes in the year ending December 2023.

That was 22% higher than the number of 12,034 crimes in 2022, implying that 40 blade offences were committed every day in London last year.

Gun offenses increased by 20% to 1,208 in 2023, up nearly 200 from the 1,010 recorded by police the previous year.

Tory mayoral candidate Susan Hall responded to the data, saying, “Knife crime is out of control in Sadiq Khan’s London, and he is just not listening.

“I am listening to Londoners, which is why I will recruit 1,500 more police, bring back borough-based policing and give every frontline officer knife detection wands so we can get more knives off our streets.”

There were 9,694 knife crimes in the city in the year ending March 31, 2016, just before Khan entered office. The latest statistic of 14,626 in 2023 represents a 51% increase since the beginning of his mayoralty.

When asked on Thursday (25th) if he accepts responsibility for the recent increase in these crimes, Khan responded: “It’s critical that we do everything we can to address the complex causes of crime, as well as crime itself.

“That is why, for a long time, we have been investing not only in law enforcement but also in youth. As an MP and now mayor, I spend much too much time interacting with bereaved families and crime victims.

“The causes of crime are complicated but straightforward: hardship, poverty, alienation, and a lack of opportunity. You have to deal with those. This is why we are investing in youth clubs.

“At the same time, you need to be tough on crime and invest in the police.

“We’ve made some progress. So according to the ONS, you’re less likely to be a victim of violence in London than the rest of the country. According to the ONS, you’re less likely to be injured in London, than the rest of the country.”

He stated that he hopes to make “more progress” if re-elected and Labour forms the next government.

He went on to say, “We’ve more than doubled our investment on the police, reaching £1.15 billion. We now give 27% to the police, compared to 19% when I became mayor.

“We can’t carry on doing this, with one hand tied behind my back. We need government support.”

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