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One sex attack reported by Armed Forces every week... but real figure could be much higher

Daily Mail

One rape or sexual assault is reported by members of the Armed Forces every week.

The MP who released the figures believes they could be a huge underestimate, with the true figures closer to an attack a day.

Over the past two and a half years, there have been 53 reported rapes and 86 reported sexual assaults in the Army, the Navy and the Air Force.

Labour MP Madeleine Moon, who received the figures in a parliamentary question, said she was concerned there was a 'culture of silence', with hundreds of victims never reporting attacks.

Only nine rape cases and 45 sexual assault complaints have ended in conviction.

The figures only include reports made to the Armed Forces' service police departments, meaning the cases are perpetrated by servicemen and women on their compatriots.

The Ministry of Defence could not say how many victims were male and how many were female.

Madeleine Moon, MP for Bridgend, said she was concerned there was a 'culture of silence', with hundreds of victims never reporting attacks

Mrs Moon said she looked into the issue after reading that the US Department of Defense estimates that only 13.5 per cent of assault victims in the Armed Forces report the attack.

If this were true here, it would mean there was one attack a day.

Mrs Moon said: 'Worryingly, the Ministry of Defence is saying they have no record of any prosecutions taking place in civilian courts.

'In the military you're not going to come forward unless something very serious indeed has happened.

'I want to ensure the military process is robust enough and that we don't have a culture of silence preventing cases being dealt with effectively. If there is a culture of silence, we need robust structures in place to stamp it out.'

A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence said any allegations of rape and sexual assault are investigated by either the civil or service police.

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