Sentences for people who carry out acid attacks in England and Wales could be increased as part of a “wide-ranging” review, following a rise in suck attacks, the media reported on Sunday. Home Secretary Amber Rudd told the Sunday Times that perpetrators should “feel the full force of the law”. “Life sentences must not be reserved for acid attack survivors,” she added.
MPs are also due to debate acid attacks in the Commons on Monday, reports the BBC. The review will look at existing laws, the response of police, sentencing, how people access harmful products and the support offered to acid attack victims. Assaults involving corrosive substances have more than doubled in England since 2012 to 504 in 2016-17, according to official data. Separately, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) said more than 400 acid or corrosive substance attacks were carried out in England and Wales in the six months to April 2017.
Where the age of the offender was known, one in five was younger than 18. A 16-year-old boy has been charged in connection with the attacks in London on Thursday. Announcing the plans, Rudd told the Sunday Times: “Acid attacks are horrific crimes which have a devastating effect on victims, both physically and emotionally. “It is vital that we do everything to prevent these sickening attacks.”