Scottish hate crime figures rise

By Jessica Elgot, November 24, 2011

Scottish Jewish leaders have called new figures on hate crime prosecutions "worrying" and urged support for a new Bill targeting abusers who send antisemitic phone and email messages.

An analysis into religious hate crime by the Scottish Government released last week found that in 2010-2011, there were 16 prosecutions for religious hatred against Jews.

Scottish Council of Jewish Communities director Ephraim Borowski said he believed the new figures showed the community might have been "unduly complacent".

While the vast majority of religious hatred prosecutions were anti-Catholic (57 per cent) or anti-Protestant (36 per cent) crimes, anti-Jewish crimes had the next highest number of incidents (2.6 per cent) - and the highest proportion compared to the size of the Jewish population.

Mr Borowski said: "These figures are a worrying snapshot of the scale of religious hatred in Scotland today. While the absolute number of incidents remains very low, the disproportionate ratio of antisemitic incidents must give cause for concern, and we therefore welcome the commitment of government and the police to tackle all religious hatred."

Last updated: 12:57pm, November 24 2011