Crime and justice

Horsemeat: Are foreign gangs responsible?

The horsemeat scandal has led to concern that organised crime gangs may be targeting the food industry. But is there real evidence? Or are the media and politicians simply pandering to historic fears about foreigners and crime? And, asks criminologist Dick Hobbs, have we been here before?

Housing and reoffending

Housing advice agencies need to work closely with local authorities and other providers to overcome barriers faced by ex-offenders in finding accommodation, according to a new qualitative study of re-offenders and housing (.pdf). Both a lack of available housing and a tendency for offenders not to be prioritised for housing lead to high levels of homelessness […]

Supreme Court

Most people know little or nothing about Britain’s Supreme Court, new research from the National Policy Monitor (NPM) suggests. However, the court is more popular than the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). When asked if Britain should get rid of the courts, 46 per cent said Britain should get rid of the ECHR, while […]

Drugs laws don’t work

A six year scientific study for the UK Drug Policy Commission recommends that the criminal convictions imposed on 200,000 people each year for possession of small amounts of drugs to be replaced with civil penalties and drug rehabilitation orders. The findings echo the earlier analysis by Professor Steve Pudney at the Institute for Social and Economic […]

Why is the crime rate continuing to fall?

Many studies have suggested crime is mainly driven by social factors such as poverty, unemployment and inequality. And doubt has often been cast on the effectiveness of law-enforcement remedies such as imprisonment in helping to cut crime. Ken Clarke used his first major speech as Justice Secretary to describe prison as “a costly and ineffectual […]