Crimestoppers welcomes record number of anonymous tip-offs

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The Crimestoppers charity received a record number of reports from the public across Scotland over the last year.

Crimestoppers Scotland received 12,233 calls between April 1, 2016 and March this year – a 21% increase on the previous year.

It also revealed that 9,119 pieces of information were acted upon by law enforcement.

There was a 20% rise in the number of criminals arrested and charged, taking the total to 575.

The charity said five people were arrested and charged with murder, and 14 firearms, 172 lots of ammunition and five knives were recovered.

Angela Parker, national manager for Crimestoppers Scotland, said: “This is an impressive increase that shows how people are putting their trust in our charity as a way to pass on crime information whilst remaining 100% anonymous.

“Often people are too scared or concerned to speak directly to the police, despite holding the key in terms of crime information. Our guarantee of anonymity means they can pass on information without fearing consequences. Their identity will never be known.”

The organisation encourages people to pass on information by calling 0800 555 111 or using a non-traceable online form at crimestoppers-uk.org.

In addition to weapons’ seizures, the value of recovered street drugs rose 161% – from £976,920 to £1,582,612.

The value of recovered property rose £118% or £67,375 to £124,000, and £50,000 was offered in enhanced rewards.

Chief Inspector Ronnie Megaughin said: “Maintaining public visibility is essential while looking to enhance our footprint in combating threats in an increasingly global and virtual world.

“We realise that some people will not, for a variety of reasons, be necessarily comfortable contacting the police to report their suspicions of crimes and other matters but through the service provided by Crimestoppers they can do so with anonymity.

“That information can often be vital in building a more detailed picture of crime in Scotland and assist us in driving focused prevention, investigation and enforcement activity.”

Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Justice said: “Scotland continues to be a safe place to live with recorded crime down by 41% since 2006-07 and crime at its lowest level for 42 years.

“My vision is of a safe, just and resilient Scotland where people can live their lives safe from crime, disorder, danger and harm.

“By picking up the phone and contacting Crimestoppers you’re helping to prevent, detect and solve crime.”

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