Skip to main content
Home Office in the media

Home Office in the media: 23 January 2018

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Leading stories, Reactive statements

Today's Home Office related stories include a report by Leicester University about sex workers online, claims that shoplifting is on the rise and calls for internet companies to do more to tackle online child sexual exploitation.

Sex workers online

Radio 4’s Today programme covered a report by Leicester University, which suggests that sex workers face new risks as the industry shifts away from the street and brothels and moves online.

Assistant Chief Constable Daniel Vajzovich told the BBC that the police are encouraging sex workers to report crimes and added that their focus is those who exploit sex workers or cause harm.

A Home Office statement on this story can be found below.

A Home Office spokesperson said:

People who want to leave prostitution should be given every opportunity to find routes out.

We recognise the need to gather more robust evidence on the scale and nature of sex work in England and Wales, which is why the Home Office is funding research into this matter. We anticipate the research on this will take a year to complete, with a final report expected in early 2019.


The Telegraph publishes an analysis of crime statistics, which it says shows that shoplifting and muggings have increased across the UK.

The newspaper says that only five forces saw a fall in shoplifting crime between 2016 and 2017 and claims that police are not responding to “low level” crime due to budget concerns.

A Home Office statement on this story can be found below.

A Home Office spokesperson said:

The government recognises shoplifting causes disruption to businesses and damage to communities and consumers. It is not a victimless crime.

We are clear that all crimes reported to the police should be taken seriously, investigated and, where appropriate, taken through the courts and met with tough sentences.

Online child sexual exploitation

The Times and Sun report that the head of child protection at the National Police Chief’s Council, Simon Bailey, has accused internet companies of “fundamentally enabling” paedophiles to sexually abuse children.

Mr Bailey also told ITV News that not enough is being done to make chat rooms safe and take indecent material down.

The stories following yesterday’s coverage of a Lancaster University report, which called for more funding and resources to tackle online children sexual exploitation.

A Home Office statement on the Lancaster University report can be found below.

A Home Office spokesperson said:

Child sexual abuse is a sickening crime which this Government is working to tackle; it has been declared a national threat and we are investing millions of pounds to enable officers to actively seek out and bring offenders to justice. This has led to a huge increase in police activity and a marked rise in prosecutions and convictions.

We recently announced a further £20m over three years to help combat the online grooming of children for sexual exploitation, paying for dedicated officers working undercover to identify and pursue these vile predators. Our ground-breaking new £7.5 million centre of expertise on child abuse is already conducting research into the motivations of these criminals, so that we can better understand and prevent different forms of offending.

Sharing and comments

Share this page