The Government has defended the fact a long-promised ban on zombie-style blades will not come into force until the autumn, a year after it was promised by Rishi Sunak.
Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper, who visited Milton Keynes on Thursday alongside party leader Sir Keir Starmer, said the ban “goes nowhere near far enough and it is also too little, too late”.
“It doesn’t include ninja swords, it doesn’t include a whole series of dangerous weapons”, she said.
Cooper said the “penalties also aren’t strong enough” and the ban is “still not going to come in until the autumn”.
According to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics, knife crime offences recorded by police forces in England and Wales rose year-on-year but have not yet returned to levels seen before the Covid-19 pandemic.
Some 48,716 offences were recorded in the 12 months to September 2023, a 5% rise from 46,367 in the previous 12 months.