Welsh police forces saw 'hate crime rise' after EU referendum

Police car

All police forces in Wales saw hate crime rise in the first full three months following the EU referendum, new analysis has shown.

South Wales Police recorded the highest number of incidents while the biggest rise was seen in Dyfed-Powys where the number jumped by 52%.

The data for July to September 2016 was compiled by the Press Association.

Police say their own monitoring suggests incidents have levelled out after the summer's spike.

Both the South Wales and Dyfed-Powys forces saw their highest quarterly figure since comparable records began in April 2012.

The figures, following the referendum on 23 June, are for all forces in England and Wales and cover five core crimes which are deemed to be racially or religiously aggravated, ranging from assaults through to criminal damage.

Only four forces - all in England - reported a decrease on the previous three months.

Figures for Wales

  • Dyfed-Powys recorded 35 offences - up 52%
  • Gwent recorded 77 offences -up 22%
  • North Wales recorded 56 offences - up 22%
  • South Wales recorded 276 offences - up 10%

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Hamilton, the National Police Chiefs' Council's lead for hate crime, said: "We know that national and global events have the potential to trigger short-terms rises in hate crime and we saw this following the EU referendum last year.

"Police forces took a robust approach to these crimes and reporting returned to previously seen levels.

"These numbers are still far too high. We have increased the central reporting and monitoring functions to enable us to recognise spikes earlier. This will be used to assess any threats that may arise and inform local police activity."

More on this story