Fenland's Labour spokesman urges Malcolm Moss to retract "misleading" violent crime claims

MALCOLM Moss MP was this week urged to withdraw misleading claims that violent crime in Fenland shot up by 74 per cent in the last decade. Last month Mr Moss, MP for North-East Cambs, claimed there were 1,196 incidents last year compared to 689 incident

MALCOLM Moss MP was this week urged to withdraw "misleading" claims that violent crime in Fenland shot up by 74 per cent in the last decade.

Last month Mr Moss, MP for North-East Cambs, claimed there were 1,196 incidents last year compared to 689 incidents 10 years ago.

But the Conservative Party has been heavily criticised since the figures were released, after it emerged their London headquarters emailed out inaccurate crime statistics to MPs.

Labour's North-East Cambs spokesman Peter Roberts also accused Mr Moss of having "either a jaw-droppingly inept understanding of crime statistics or being guilty of purposefully misleading local people".


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Mr Roberts said: "I've written to Malcolm Moss to ask whether he plans to continue misleading local people with bogus crime statistics or whether he plans to withdraw his ridiculous claims.

"The fact is he is just wrong. I hope he is now honest enough to salvage some credibility by admitting it - our local police could do without further morale bashing."

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The way police recorded crime statistics was changed in 2002 to categorise more types of crime as violent. Home Secretary Alan Johnson said it allows "for a more accurate measure of crime involving violence".

The Government uses the British Crime Survey, a study run by statisticians rather than through police recording, to measure violent crime trends because it is not affected by the change. It shows a 49 per cent drop nationally in violent crime since 1995.

Parliament's statistics watchdog, the UK Statistics Authority, has also criticised the Conservatives' handling of the figures.

UKSA chairman Sir Michael Scholar said in a letter to the Conservative Party: "We regard a comparison, without qualification, of police recorded statistics between the late 1990s and 2008/09 as likely to mislead the public."

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