New figures released today have revealed a shocking 2,957 people were raped across West Yorkshire in the 12 months to March 2018.
Of the 2,957 rapes reported to West Yorkshire Police, just 187 cases - 6.3 per cent - were referred to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for a charging decision.
Of those, the CPS charged 131 cases.
During the same year, the CPS successfully convicted 160 cases and brought 83 unsuccessful prosecutions.
The data, which has been gathered by the Rape Monitoring Group (RMG), also reveals that across West Yorkshire there were 1,793 rapes of a female aged 16 and over; 290 rapes of a female aged under 13; and 554 rapes of a female aged 14 to 16.
It also reveals there were 115 rapes of a male aged 16 and over; 167 rapes of a male aged under 13; and 38 rapes of a male aged 14 to 16.
In this same period, West Yorkshire Police received 283 rape reports that were not recorded as a crime. It transferred 10 rape offences to other police forces and cancelled 137 rape offences.
Superintendent Sareth Humpage of West Yorkshire Police, said “All rape offences are treated extremely seriously by West Yorkshire Police and investigated by specially trained detectives.
“Rape is an abhorrent crime and it is therefore positive that victims are feeling more confident to able to report these offences to the police.
“We work closely with victim services to provide support for individuals throughout the criminal justice journey.
“We acknowledge the significant increase in reports and dealing with this is a priority for the Force.
“There is an ongoing national review to further research the reported increases. We continue to work with partner agencies to strive to improve and achieve the best possible outcome for each victim."
The Chief Executive of Leeds Women’s Aid said the latest figures show that rape and violence are a “daily reality”.
Nik Peasgood said: "Nearly 90 per cent of all recorded rapes in West Yorkshire are against women and girls. It is clear that whilst a high number of women and girls are bravely reporting rapes to the police, it is disturbing that only six per cent of all recorded rapes are even being referred to the Crown Prosecution Service for a charging decision, leaving 94 per cent to be dismissed.
"We have been campaigning for many years for rape and sexual assault cases to be taken more seriously and we believe that these figures justify our concerns. We believe that there needs to be wider education of the public regarding rape and sexual violence along with the criminal justice system agencies. Most women and girls don’t report sexual violence and assault as they see figures like this and assume that they won’t be believed.
"We will offer advice to anyone who has experienced rape or sexual violence and work in partnership with other organisations offering a wide range of support. If you are in need of help and support, please call the LDVS 24 hour helpline on 0113 246 0401."