About 75% of all rape reports in the city are raised with police more than three weeks after the alleged incident – risking vital evidence being lost.
Police Superintendent Kate Stephen told the city council’s public protection committee the vast majority of complaints are made to the force after the “generally accepted forensic window” of three weeks.
The number of reported rapes and sexual assaults in Aberdeen has risen in recent years, but police have attributed this to an increased confidence among victims in reporting the crime.
Figures showed that between April and September last year there was an increase in the number of rapes recorded in the city, with 59 compared to a five-year average of 41.6.
With publicity around the issue of historic rapes and abuse, more people are coming forward to the police.