Brexit toxicity? Crimes in UK parliament soar by almost 50 percent in two years

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The number of crimes reported in Britain’s parliament, including assault, robbery, drug possession and blackmail, have increased by nearly 50 percent since 2016, according to figures released by the Metropolitan Police.

Data acquired by Sky News under the Freedom of Information Act shows that there were 578 crimes reported on parliamentary grounds in Westminster between 2016 and 2018. In total, 236 crimes were reported in 2018, a 45 percent rise on 2016 numbers (163 reports).

The number of threatening letters sent to MPs has more than doubled in that time amid concerns they’re being targeted over their views on Brexit.

Yasmin Qureshi, Labour MP for Bolton South East, who was the victim of online harassment by a man who was later jailed, suggests the steep rise in threatening letters is linked to the toxicity surrounding the contentious Brexit issue.

In the aftermath of allegations of sexual harassment and bullying that rocked Westminster in 2017, the Met Police said it received four reports of harassment in 2018 and four in 2017.

The figures come as House of Commons Speaker John Bercow puts forward proposals to have MPs install CCTV cameras in their offices to protect staff from unwanted sexual advances and bullying, the Times reports.

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