Dudley MP Ian Austin has slammed the government for failing to bring Black Country criminals to court.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Monday, Austin revealed figures showing that Black Country courts heard just 110,000 cases last year, down by more than a third compared to 170,000 cases in 2010.
Austin demanded that the Home Secretary bring criminals to trial instead of allowing police to settle serious cases including domestic violence and rape with cautions.
Last year Austin led a successful campaign against government plans to close Dudley Magistrates Court.
Speaking in Home Office questions, Ian Austin said:
“Magistrates in Dudley tell me that as a result of the reduction in the number of police officers, people accused of quite serious crimes such as burglary, assault, domestic violence and even rape, are no longer being taken to court in the Black Country.
“The number of cases taken to court is down by a third.
“Why doesn’t the government understand that my constituents want to see police on the streets, offenders in court and criminals in jail?”
“People in Dudley want more police on the streets, more offenders going to court and more criminals being put in jail. What will she do to make this happen?”
|Hearings in Magistrates Courts for Criminal, Civil and Enforcement|
|2010-11||2011-12||2012-13||2013-14||Fall since 2010|
|Cannock Magistrates Court||9,031||13,688||17,148||18,738||-9,707|
|Coventry Magistrates' Court||25,807||22,578||20,485||16,275||9,532|
|Dudley Magistrates' Court||15,552||18,436||17,100||10,502||5,050|
|Halesowen Magistrates' Court||2,330||0||0||0||2,330|
|Redditch Magistrates Court||9,335||9,883||7,415||7,468||1,867|
|Solihull Magistrates' Court||15,374||9,434||9,253||4,659||10,715|
|Stafford Magistrates Court||9,771||3,129||5,397||4,839||4,932|
|Telford Magistrates Court||13,860||14,630||12,061||11,702||2,158|
|Walsall Magistrates' Court||19,493||18,476||12,560||9,864||9,629|
|Warley Magistrates Court||18,468||22,997||16,200||12,584||5,884|
|West Bromwich Magistrates Court||7,495||0||0||0||7,495|
|Wolverhampton Magistrates Court||23,124||18,853||15,421||14,010||9,114|