Identify the Official Crime Statistics in England & Wales, Provide Some Background Information on Them, and Identify Their Difference Fundamental.

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The official crime statistics in England & Wales are the police recorded crime and the British Crime Survey (BCS), also known as Crime Survey in England and Wales (CSEW) The police recorded crime include crimes that are reported to and recorded by the police and it has been collected since 1857. It is very useful, since it gives us data from all the 43 police force areas and in theory, it covers the whole population. It includes all the categories of crime that are on the “Notifiable Offence List”. The list consists of two main crime categories: “either way” offences and “indictable” offences. Either way offences are tried before the magistrates` courts or the Crown court and may include crimes such as breaking and entering, shoplifting and grievous body harm. Indictable offences on the other hand, are tried before the Crown court and include more “serious” crimes such as murder, rape and robbery. (Maguire 2012, p.212) The British Crime Survey is included in the official crime statistics since 2002. The BCS has been operational since 1982 and has proven its efficiency. It runs annually and it is a national victimization survey. It covers private households and over 45 000 people of age over 16 and since 2009 it also includes 10-15 year olds. The format of BCS and what is included in the questionnaires and interviews has changed little over the years (Maguire 2012, p.218-219) It is important to note that both of them aim to supplement, rather than compete with each other. However they both emphasize on different types of crime – where the BCS focuses on the unrecorded and unreported offences, the police recorded crime is more accurate when it comes to consensual crimes, crimes against organizations or crimes against under-aged children. (Maguire 2012, p.221)
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