Forcing offenders to say "sorry" for their crimes persuades virtually none of them to go straight, official research showed yesterday.

A Home Office report said "restorative cautioning", in which offenders apologise to their victims, had little effect on reconviction rates. It also dismissed the findings of a previous study which said restorative cautioning had been a success, suggesting its good results were down to police making extra effort because researchers were present.
The report looked at restorative justice schemes in the Thames Valley and compared them with traditional cautioning schemes in Sussex and Warwickshire.

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