BURGLARS are raiding 40 more homes a week across Hampshire than they did last year - shock new statistics have revealed.

It comes as figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show a 17 per cent rise in crime across the county compared to the same period in 2016.

Reports of sexual crimes have shot up by almost 25 per cent in the last year, while violent crimes have also seen an upwards spike.

John Apter (pictured), chairman of the Hampshire Police Federation, has described the figures as “worrying”.

He said: “Hampshire Constabulary has taken great steps to make the reporting of crime more transparent and for that reason the number of crimes has increased significantly.

“But as a county the number of crimes being committed has been rising and the facts speak for themselves.

“The worrying thing is we are seeing tens of thousands of more crimes reported but we have hundreds fewer officers .”

Mr Apter added he felt that the government’s “systematic dismantling” of police forces across the country was to blame for the rise in crime.

“It’s got to the point where it is no longer sustainable,” he said.

His comments come after statistics, released yesterday by the ONS, revealed there had 23,000 crimes more crimes reported across Hampshire for the year ending June 2017, than there had been at the same point in June 2016.

That equates to a 17.6 per cent rise – higher than the 13 per cent rise recorded national.

The figures also show there were 2,000 more domestic burglaries reported across Hampshire compared to last year - a rate of more than five per day.

Violent crime jumped from 44,261 to 51,684, while reports of sexual related crimes increased from 4,115 to 5,199.

However drug related crime has dipped – which police say is down to the success of its “tough stance” through Operation Fortress.

Commenting on the statistics, Hampshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Michael Lane, said: “I want to start by reassuring everyone that we are fortunate to very largely live in a safe area.

“That the statistics show some rises in crime are real: Better recording and confidence to report are good things, but the rise in violent crime is an issue for communities and all partners in keeping us safer.

Mr Lane said that theft remained a concern, but said the priority would remain on keeping people safe.

He added: “I have made the case for a fairer national funding formula, which would help.But the economic pressures remain very challenging.”

Hampshire Constabulary’s Detective chief superintendent Stuart Murray said an increase in reporting of crime should not be seen as a negative.

He added: “It may be a reflection that the public have greater confidence in coming forward to speak to us and we welcome that.

“We are continuing to focus on those crimes that cause the most harm to people and most importantly, we are listening to our victims and investigating thoroughly.”