What Is A Kidnapping Hot Spot Not?

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glamour, grit and shiny shiny cars

Now then, the capital’s Kidnapping Statistics – one area that this Londonista doesn’t normally bone up about at the kitchen table on a Sunday morning.

The headline figure is that, so far this year, 315 cases of kidnapping have taken place across the capital.

This sounds a lot, but don’t be treating your ‘The Wire’ boxsets as documentaries just yet. After year-end the Met tends to do further analysis, and reclassifies around a third of cases so that should bring the figure down a bit, as long as Father Christmas doesn’t go on a bit of a crime spree from his sleigh in the next fortnight.

Plus, London’s a packed city of 7.5 million people, so we calculate that you had about a 1 in 25,000 chance of being kidnapped (or, we suppose, kidnapping someone else). And you survived the odds, right? right?

Reading a bit more into this, the GOOD NEWS is that in 80% of cases the police rescue the kidnappee. The BAD NEWS is that successful prosecution only comes in 20% of cases (although we hope this is because they are prosecuted for false imprisonment, assault, abduction etc instead).

So how does your borough compare? Have a scan below. Two caveats – 1) we’re not sure why Heathrow shows up here, not being a borough 2) these aren’t always where the snatch happened, or indeed where the hostage is held – it’s where they are reported:

Newham 34

Lambeth 22

Greenwich 19

Southwark 18

Redbridge 16

Tower Hamlets 16

Lewisham 15

Waltham Forest 15

Barking & Dagenham 14

Haringey 13

Croydon 12

Enfield 12

Hillingdon 11

Harrow 10

Bexley 9

Hammersmith & Fulham 8

Bromley 8

Hackney 8

Havering 8

Brent 7

Westminster 7

Camden 6

Islington 5

Wandsworth 5

Sutton 4

Kingston 3

Barnet 3

Hounslow 2

Merton 2

Richmond 1

Heathrow 1

Ealing 1

Kensington & Chelsea 0

Total 315

This is being written in sunny Southwark (not far off the top of the league). Very much of this Londonista’s own free will, I hasten to add.

Wire Image from sezzy_boy’s Flickrstream

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  • http://undefined dave.hastings

    Ealing not a borough? When did this happen? Why haven’t they taken down the signs on the North Circular?

  • http://www.breakfastatbritannia.blogspot.com/ CRAiG

    oh, fair point dave. clearly a mad five minutes, will amend.

  • http://bloodandproperty.blogspot.com/ bloodandproperty

    I didn’t check for things like unknown boroughs – I was expecting Hackney to have been worse and didn’t bother looking much further down – a bit embarrassing! But all this lot came from a police FOI request so hopefully Heathrow means something to them. I’ll try and find out. You’re right about the unlikeliness of being a kidnap victim but how much police time and resource do these crimes use up? For armed cops – I don’t know how many there are in London – but overall they deal with nearly one kidnap per working day which must make for a busy life on top of the straightforward violent crime.