Lies, Falsehoods and Misrepresentations from Boris Johnson to Rishi Sunak

‎”Since 2010, since the Conservatives have been in power, since then, overall crime has fallen by about 50%”

PM Rishi Sunak, Guardian

Facts

Speaking to the Guardian, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak claimed that “overall crime” had dropped by 50% since 2010, when the Conservative Party took office. He has made this claim on a number of occasions (see here, here, here & here).

This claim is based on Crime Survey Data for England and Wales and does not include fraud and computer misuse offences. Due to a change in the data collected by the survey, data relating to fraud and computer misuse is only available from 2015.

According to the Crime Survey data, excluding fraud and computer misuse, in 2010 there were an estimated 9.5 million offences and in 2022 there were an estimated 4.8 million offences. 

Including fraud and computer misuse, there were an estimated 9.2 million offences in 2022. Because there is no data that includes fraud and computer misuse before 2015 it is impossible to compare the total number of offences between 2010 and 2022.

A Home Office spokesperson told Full Fact that, because fraud and computer misuse only began to be included in the crime survey in 2015, it is necessary to exclude those offences when making longer-term comparisons, and said: “We have made it clear the figures used to show the reduction in crime excludes fraud and computer misuse.”

Full Fact contacted Downing Street about Mr Sunak’s comments but have not yet received a response.

Verdict

Given the available figures it would be fair to say that when excluding fraud and computer misuse offences, crime has indeed fallen by about 50% since 2010. However, by specifically citing  “overall crime”, Rishi Sunak was misleading voters.

There are no available statistics that show “overall crime” in 2010 and thus no comparison can be made with figures from 2022.

As so often Rishi Sunak was being selective in his use of statistics. 

We emailed Rishi Sunak’s office and Number 10 offering him the chance to respond. The email was received, but no reply. 

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