Police chief’s pledge to combat hate crime

By James Martin in Barnet, July 23, 2009

The new head of Barnet Police has pledged to do his “utmost to clamp down on antisemitic incidents” following a significant rise in cases within the borough.

Eighty-six incidents were reported in the year ending in March, compared to 53 over the previous 12 months. Close to half occurred in a two-month period from the start of Israel’s Gaza incursion.

Acknowledging “a steep increase in antisemitic incidents,” Chief Superintendent Neil Basu said the police were working with the community to encourage victims of antisemitic acts to come forward, “as people are not always reporting them. I want every antisemitic incident to be followed up.” Both Barnet and the Crown Prosecution Service could not supply figures for arrests or prosecutions over the reported incidents.

A police spokesman added that the Barnet Safer Transport Team, monitoring transport hubs including Golders Green and Edgware, had made “a positive impact in reducing the number of antisemitic incidents on public transport”.

Mr Basu has already had discussions with the Community Security Trust, whose Mark Gardner said: “Our relationship is overwhelmingly positive. Of course, the CST wishes to see more prosecutions for antisemitic crimes.”

    Last updated: 11:27am, July 23 2009