London’s courts are having to deal with thousands of offenders who already have been convicted multiple times according to new statistics obtained by City Hall’s Conservative group.
The figures, released under Freedom of Information laws, show that 97,039 offenders with two or more previous convictions appeared in court over the past two years.
Over a third of these had 10 or more previous convictions, while more than 60,000 had been convicted at least 6 times.
London Assembly member Tony Arbour is calling for training and education to become mandatory for first timers in prison to improve their chances of securing work on release and reduce re-offending rates.
Mr Arbour said: “Crime may be falling but it’s shocking to see our justice system periodically churning out the same old characters who seem to be collecting convictions as if they’re medals.
“Where appropriate, the courts should have powers to impose mandatory training or education for first-timers going to prison.
“Whether it’s basic literacy or vocational programmes, arming people with skills and qualifications will help them into jobs and out of a life of criminality. Society will benefit and we will save the public purse huge amounts of cash in the long run.”