Criminals who assault emergency workers will face up to two years in prison

Criminals who assault emergency workers will face up to two years in prison as ministers DOUBLE maximum sentences Criminals who assault emergency workers will face up to two years in jail Ministers plan to bring forward legislation to double the maximum sentence It relates to those convicted of assaults on police, prison staff, custody officers, fire service personnel, search and rescue workers and frontline health workers

By Henry Martin For Mailonline

Published: 00:01 BST, 15 September 2020 | Updated: 00:01 BST, 15 September 2020

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Criminals who assault emergency workers will face up to two years in jail under a new law announced by the Government.

Ministers plan to bring forward legislation to double the maximum sentence for those convicted of assaults on police, prison staff, custody officers, fire service personnel, search and rescue workers and frontline health workers.

More than 11,000 people were prosecuted for assaulting an emergency worker in 2019, the Ministry of Justice said.

The Conservatives pledged in their 2019 election manifesto to consult on doubling the maximum sentence for assaulting emergency service workers.

Assaults cover acts including being pushed, shoved or spat at, but prosecutions can take place under more serious offences when an emergency worker is seriously injured.

The new law will apply to police, prison staff, custody officers, fire service personnel, search and rescue workers and frontline health workers.

Ministers plan to bring forward legislation to double the maximum sentence for those convicted of assaults on police, prison staff, custody officers, fire service personnel, search and rescue workers and frontline health workers (file image)

Ministers plan to bring forward legislation to double the maximum sentence for those convicted of assaults on police, prison staff, custody officers, fire service personnel, search and rescue workers and frontline health workers (file image)

It will be the second change in two years after the 2018 Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act increased the maximum sentence from six months to a year.

The law change also meant that when a person is convicted of offences including sexual assault or manslaughter, the judge must consider whether the offence was committed against an emergency worker as an aggravating factor meriting an increase in the sentence.

The Home Secretary

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