DORSET has seen a 100 per cent conviction rate for rape offences in three of the past four quarters, an MP has said.

Sir Christopher Chope, Conservative MP for Christchurch, provided the figure during a House of Commons debate on the incidence of rape cases not taken forward for criminal prosecution.

Justice minister Victoria Atkins said nationally rape convictions had been increasing 67 per cent since 2020.

She said time between a charge being brought and cases being completed continued to fall.

Ms Atkins said this was “encouraging but it is just the start”. She said the Government was increasing victim support and rolling out pre-recorded cross-examination for alleged rape victims to all crown courts nationally.

Sir Christopher said he commended Ms Atkins for her emphasis on local facts in Parliament on June 28.

“This morning, I was talking to Suzanne Llewellyn, the chief Crown prosecutor for Wessex, who told me that currently 12 people are being prosecuted for rape in Dorset, which is twice as many as in the same period of 2016, and that in three of the past four quarters the rape conviction rate in Dorset has been 100 per cent, which obviously compares very favourably with the national average of 68 per cent,” Sir Christopher said.

“So there is good news at the local level, and we need to do more to bring that to the public’s attention.”

As reported, in 2021 Dorset recorded 10 rape convictions from 19 prosecutions while police received 815 reports of rape last year.

Just 1.7 per cent of the 815 rape investigations concluded by Dorset Police in 2021 led to a charge or summons.