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Last week's Sunday Times made unpleasant reading for residents of Ealing. The paper published figures which they said came from an internal Home Office report which showed that the clear up rates for burglary in the borough of Ealing were the lowest in the country.

Only 6.7% of burglaries were cleared up by Ealing Police compared to some forces which resolved over 40% of such crimes. The figures have reportedly been prepared for all 250 basic command units (BCUs) in England and Wales. They compare the performance of different commanders down to superintendent level in arresting criminals for the year to October 31, 2004.

Ealing Police refused to comment on figures which they described as 'purported' but they did say that detection rates for the Met as a whole have been rising substantially. For all crimes Ealing's detection rate at 17.57% was superior to neighbouring Hounslow and Hammersmith & Fulham but all these areas ranked in the bottom 25 in the country. Overall burglary rates have fallen significantly in the last few years.

Most of the better performing BCUs were in Wales and it has been suggested that it is easier for police to catch burglars in settled communities were the victims are likely to know potential suspects. In the more transient communities of London identifying potential suspects is more difficult.

January 5, 2005