New Scottish Police Centre Launched to Fight Cyber Crime

  • Additional police officers trained in combating cyber crime are to be deployed in Scotland
  • Police Scotland has also announced plans to establish a “centre of excellence” for cyber crimes, with at least 150 specialist staff
  • Its focus will be on offences such as child sexual abuse, fraud, and the sharing of indecent images
  • The force has said online sexual crimes against children have increased during the Covid-19 pandemic and that June was the busiest month ever for reported child sexual abuse
  • Police Scotland recorded 226 crimes, an increase of 21% on the same month the previous year
  • Deputy chief constable Malcolm Graham said: “The nature of crime is changing and Police Scotland needs to change with it. The online space is becoming a bigger part of the front line of policing every day”

Teenage County Lines Drug Dealers Posed as Key Workers

New Study Highlights How School Closures Increased Risk for Vulnerable Parents

  • The closure of schools as a result of COVID-19 lockdown measures may have harmed children as child abuse was not reported, a new study examining the numbers of child protection referrals made in the first few months of 2020 has found
  • The research was conducted by the University of Birmingham and Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust and analysed differences in the number and the outcomes of child protection referrals for CPME in Birmingham from March to June 2020 compared with the same periods in 2018 and 2019
  • Results showed a significant drop of 39% in the number of CPME referrals, with just 47 referrals in 2020 compared with 75 in the same period in 2019 and 78 in 2018. This drop coincides with the near total absence of referrals made by schools after school closures were mandated in March. Even after schools were partially re-opened in June, there was no increase in referrals
  • Corresponding author Professor Julie Taylorfrom the University of Birmingham’s School of Nursing said: “Our findings further evidence the hidden harm to children from COVID-19

Children Malnourished leading to Serious Case Reviews in Norfolk

  • Two children from different families in Norfolk have suffered abuse and neglect that left one with extensive burns and the other so malnourished he could barely walk
  • The children’s situations were subject to serious case reviews by Norfolk Safeguarding Children Partnership
  • In both cases questions were raised over their care by multiple agencies
  • The children have since been placed into foster care and police investigations are ongoing
  • The girl, aged five, set herself on fire while playing with a cigarette lighter in August 2019, two days after intervention by children’s services was downgraded.
  • She suffered burns to 26% of her body
  • Paramedics and police made multiple visits between January 2018 and August 2019 due to injuries to the child and reports of anti-social behaviour at her home, resulting in referrals to children’s services
  • The review found an overreliance on information being available to partner agencies through online systems