Figures 'show sharp increase in property crime'
Unpublished police data shows a sharp increase in property crime and a rise in shoplifting, with police forces reporting first-time arrests of people stealing basic food, The Times (£) has reported.
The data, from April to September, also suggests there is a North-South divide, with the North West facing "challenging" increases in property crime.
The unconfirmed figures for the North West, which includes Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire, Cheshire and Cumbria, show theft has risen 7.8%, household burglary by 5.4% and shoplifting by 10.7% compared with the year-earlier period, according to the report.
The Home Office told the newspaper crime had fallen significantly across the country since the Coalition came to power.