THE NUMBER of suspended sentences handed out by courts for serious and repeat offenders has increased 14 fold in ten years according to a new report.
The Centre for Crime Prevention figures show more than a quarter of prison sentences for such offences in Staffordshire are being suspended.
Some 26 per cent of such sentences were suspended in 2012 compared with two per cent 10 years earlier.
The number of sentences held over in 2002 in the county was 45. That figure had rocketed to 632 by 2012.
In 2002 one crime in 417 received a suspended sentence – that figure had soared to one in 37 in 2012 – a 14-fold increase.