JUST one in every 60 rape cases reported in Hampshire end with a suspect being charged, new figures show.

Between April and June this year, 538 rape cases were closed by Hampshire Constabulary. Of those, just nine resulted in a suspect being charged or ordered to appear in court.

Charges were less likely for rape than other sexual offences in Hampshire, for which five per cent of the 865 cases reported resulted in a suspect being charged.

For other cases of violence against the person, 10 per cent resulted in a charge.

In nearly half of rape reports, the case was closed because of lack of evidence, with the victim unwilling to support further police action.

Across England and Wales, a suspect was charged in four per cent of rape cases and eight per cent of other sexual offences.

Katie Russell, of Rape Crisis England and Wales, said: “These figures are extremely concerning, but reflect what we already know: that the criminal justice system is currently failing victims and survivors of rape, sexual abuse and all forms of sexual violence.

A spokesperson for Hampshire Constabulary said: “Of course we are disappointed with the numbers of cases that result in a conviction but these types of crimes are extremely difficult to investigate and to be able to prove to a standard of beyond all reasonable doubt. What is encouraging is that victims and survivors of rape have the confidence to report such crimes to the police and that we continue to provide them with a professional service.”