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The figures come as three quarters of police forces in England and Wales reported highest-ever levels after the European Union referendum on June 23.

In the Northumbria force area it was a 48 per cent increase, with 394 incidents recorded, the highest quarterly figure since records began in April 2012.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said the findings suggested that a small number of people used the Brexit vote "to legitimise inexcusable racism and prejudice".

Nearly every police force in the country has reported a rise in hate crimes.

In total three quarters of police forces in England and Wales recorded their highest levels of hate crime in the three months after June's vote since records began.

Police are looking into whether hate-crime legislation should be created in New Zealand, following an alleged racial attack in Huntly.

Ukip leader Paul Nuttall has been slammed for saying figures showing a rise in violence after Brexit were "fabricated", as the party claimed it is too "easy" to start hate crime investigations.

"Had the campaign been conducted in a different manner, I don't think we would have seen that explosion in hate crime".

Megan Sarah Louise Walton pleaded guilty to charges relating to the Huntly incident in Hamilton District Court on Monday
DOMINICO ZAPATA FAIRFAX NZ Megan Sarah Louise Walton pleaded guilty to charges relating to the Huntly incident in Hamilton District Court on Monday

However City of London Police reported a seven per cent drop in hate crime, with just 25 incidents reported in the same time period.

A further 31 police forces reported that more than 1,500 offenses relating to the victim's race or religion had been recorded in the two weeks up to and including the day of the referendum, June 23.

The charity Victim Support said they had witnessed an increase in the number of referrals after the decision to leave the European Union.

Lucy Hastings, director at Victim Support, said the charity supported 16,000 victims of hate crime in England and Wales a year ago.

'We can not allow such intolerable acts of hate to be condoned or repeated.

"Victims and the public should have confidence that we will handle reports of hate crime sensitively and in the most appropriate way possible".

The new analysis shows that a rise in incidents was seen in nearly every force in England and Wales, both year-on-year and when comparing the three months either side of the referendum.

A spokesman said: "The Home Secretary has been crystal clear that crime motivated by hostility and prejudice towards any group in society has no place whatsoever in a Britain that works for everyone".


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