Crime rise fears after police announce cuts

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THE POLICE Federation has warned of rising crime rates if the number of frontline police officers is reduced.

The warning comes after Norfolk and Suffolk police confirmed they will be making £38million in cuts to the combined force over the next four years.

Chairman of Suffolk’s Police Federation, Matt Gould, said: “If they had a magic bullet to reduce crime without police officers we would have done it years ago. You only get less for less.

“Crime rates can only suffer because of the cuts.

“The police officers have given a lot to the organisation over the years and, to be brutally frank, the Government forcing the reduction of officers is just appalling.”

Simon Ash, Suffolk’s Chief Constable, said they would work hard to minimise the effects of the cuts.

He said: “Yes, there will be fewer officers and staff in both Norfolk and Suffolk, but by re-engineering the way we deliver services, we will be minimising the effects of a reduced workforce.

“No one should underestimate how tough it is to make such significant savings and aim to continually reduce the chances of the public being victims either of crime or anti-social behaviour.”

Suffolk police’s plans have been praised by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary.

A recent HMIC review into the cuts said: “The Norfolk and Suffolk collaboration proposals are some of the most ambitious and well-planned in the country.”