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England riots: almost 1,000 people jailed so far, figures show

PUBLISHED February 23, 2012

Average sentence of 14.2 months is four times the average jail term handed down by the courts for similar offences in 2010

Almost 1,000 people have been sent to prison for an average of 14 months for their part in last summer's riots, according to Ministry of Justice figures published on Thursday.

The official figures show that 1,483 people had been found guilty and sentenced by the courts by 1 February for riot-related offences. This represents 55% of the 2,710 people brought before the courts so far.

The MoJ figures confirm the punitive approach that the courts have taken towards rioters with the 945 offenders who have been jailed given an average of 14.2 months. This is four times the average sentence length of 3.7 months handed down by the courts for similar offences in 2010.

The most common offences with which rioters were charged were burglary (49%), violent disorder (21%), theft (16%), robbery (2%) and criminal damage (2%).

The vast majority of cases involved disturbances that took place in London. A total of 1,896 of the 2,710 people have so far appeared in London courts. A further 301 have been in the West Midlands, 240 in Manchester, 92 in Merseyside, and 64 in Nottingham.

The majority of those brought before the courts have been under the age of 20 with 27% juveniles under 18. This is a younger age profile than is normally seen by the courts for similar offences.

The overwhelming majority were male ? 89% ? and 41% of defendants whose ethnicity is known were white. A further 39% were black, 6% were Asian and 12% from a mixed race background. © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds