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3,000 children in London sex attacks in just 12 months

PUBLISHED: 07:00 29 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:32 05 October 2010

MORE than 3,000 children have been sexually abused by adults in London in the past 12 months, shock figures this week reveal. Statistics obtained under the Freedom of Information Act from Scotland Yard show 3,278 known sex offences against youngsters including 502 under 11

By Mike Brooke

MORE than 3,000 children have been sexually abused by adults in London in the past 12 months, shock figures released this week reveal.

Statistics obtained under the Freedom of Information Act from Scotland Yard show 3,278 known sex offences against youngsters in 2008-09, including 502 aged 10 or younger. The rest were under 17.

The figures are included in Home Office statistics showing an average of 60 sex offences against children recorded every day by police forces up and down the country.

They were obtained from all 43 police forces in England and Wales by the NSPCC, the national charity which operates its 24-hour Childline call centre at Spitalfields in London’s East End.

The figures show nearly 22,000 incidents over 12 months when youngsters under 18 were victims of sex crimes including rape, gross indecency and incest.

“Most abuse goes unreported,” claimed NSPCC strategy director Phillip Noyes. “Many children don’t speak out about because they’re scared they won’t be believed.

“Some are so young they find it difficult to protect or tell anyone what’s happening.”

The NSPCC is calling on the Government to publish age details and link them with the number of convictions from the recorded offences.

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Youngsters can get help and free confidential counselling on ChildLine: 0800-1111. They can also go onto the NSPCC website for help and advice.

Concerned adults wanting to report abuse can call the NSPCC’s main helpline, 0808-8005000, or email here.


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