Police forces across the country have revealed a surge in the number of anti-Muslim hate crimes this year – but police chiefs in South Yorkshire claim they do not record offences in the same way as other forces.
Britain’s biggest force, the Metropolitan Police, recorded 500 offences from January to mid-November this year, compared with 336 in 2012 and 318 in 2011. In May, the month when two Islamic extremists murdered soldier Lee Rigby in south-east London, Scotland Yard recorded 104 anti-Muslim hate crimes, followed by another 108 in June. Greater Manchester Police recorded nearly double the number of Islamophobic crimes this year – 130 in 2013 compared with 75 in 2012.
But South Yorkshire Police said it was unable to provide like-for-like figures. A spokesman said its crime management system “does not facilitate the recording of anti-Muslim hate crime separately to other forms of religious hate crimes”. He said the system “solely relies on what information is entered by the inputter recording the crime”.
The force found five anti-Muslim hate crimes recorded from January to October, four in 2012, and five in 2011.