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COPFS

Racially Aggravated Charges – Edinburgh (R010028)

Freedom of Information: Racially Aggravated Charges – Edinburgh (R010028)

Thank you for your e-mail of 27 March 2014 in which you requested information about the conversion rates between police reports and successful prosecutions in relation to racially aggravated charges in Edinburgh cases over the last 6 months.


I understand that the information you have requested is contained within the publication “Hate Crime in Scotland” which provides information on race crime and on crime aggravated by religion, disability, sexual orientation or transgender identity prejudice.  This publication is currently accessible on the COPFS website for the periods 2011/12 to 2013/14 using the following link

http://www.copfs.gov.uk/publications/equality-and-diversity

Information for financial year 2014/15 will be available in June 2015. 

I attach an excerpt from the report from period 2013/14 which I hope you will find helpful in relation to your request.

“In total 4,148 charges relating to race crime were reported in 2013-14. This is an increase of 3% compared to 2012-13. However this is still the second lowest annual figure in the period covered in this report (and the second lowest since 2003-04 when 3,322 charges were reported).

The proportion of charges that specifically relate to racially aggravated harassment and behaviour has fallen over recent years, from 64% in 2008-09 to 55% in 2013-14. There has been a corresponding increase in the proportion of charges relating to other offences with a racial aggravation. In order to prove a charge of racially aggravated harassment and behaviour two sources of evidence are required whereas evidence from a single source is sufficient to prove a racial aggravation which is attached to another substantive charge libelled.

Court proceedings were commenced in respect of 87% of charges in 2013-14. In total, 93% of charges reported in 2013-14 led to court proceedings (including those not separately prosecuted, but which may have been incorporated into other charges for the same accused).

No action was taken in respect of 3% of charges.”

Unfortunately COPFS are unable to produce reliable conviction statistics.  I should explain that our case management system is not designed to provide statistical information, it is a live, operating database and the information contained within it is structured accordingly.  I would suggest that you contact the Scottish Government in respect of this aspect of your request.