PUBLISHED: 22:13, 13 July 2013 | UPDATED: 22:14, 13 July 2013
">New human rights farce [sic] as police are afraid to release crooks' mugshots despite national guidelines.
>More than half forces in England and Wales refuse to publish mugshots unless the person has been jailed.
>Forces are urged to release pictures and details of more detained suspects.
>Widely acknowledged that publicity can link offenders to other crimes.
Some forces insist on sentences of more than three years before they release a custody photo to the press.
A new secret justice row broke out last night after The Mail on Sunday discovered that hundreds of thousands of convicted criminals are having their identities protected by police.
More than half of forces in England and Wales refuse to publish mugshots of offenders unless they have been jailed – in defiance of national guidelines.
Some insist on sentences of more than three years before they release a custody photo to the press, citing concerns about data protection and the criminals’ human rights.
This means just a tiny handful of the 1.2 million people sentenced in criminal courts each year have their pictures published or put online, even though it is widely acknowledged that publicity can link offenders to other crimes and prevent more from being committed.
It comes after The Mail on Sunday revealed ‘secret arrest’ plans by police chiefs, backed by Lord Justice Leveson and now put in place across the country, to prevent forces revealing the names of suspects they have detained."
Following this newspaper’s investigation, the Association of Chief Police Officers’ senior officer in charge of media policy wrote to all 43 chief constables in England and Wales urging them to release more photos of sentenced offenders."