A three year old boy was injured in a suspected acid attack in Worcester with several people arrested, and statistics indicate acid attacks are on the rise in London (though I suppose it could be increased reporting rather than increased incidents).
What is the UK doing to prevent such attacks? I know that some people talking about "common sense acid control" are making sarcastic comments about gun control, but I find acid throwing (along with other forms of violence) abhorrent.
UK has one of highest rates of acid attacks in the world, police reveal from December 2017 reports the following claims:
- The UK lacks dedicated laws about acid attacks, which makes it harder for the police to respond to them
- Acid attacks are being under-reported
- Legislation is being drafted, but is not in place, to restrict purchases and prohibit the carrying of such substances without justification
- Police need "adequate suspicion" to stop attackers
- Police can't test seized substances
- A pilot program to test substances couldn't show whether a substance was harmful (presumably sufficiently acidic or sufficiently alkaline to harm someone)
- Retailers have voluntarily stopped the sale of some hazardous substances, and imposed age restrictions or identification checks
- Police will be given training over the following 12 months
Acid attacks: What has led to the rise and how can they be stopped? from July last year makes the following claims:
- The use of acid gets a "GBH with intent" charge, whereas a knife attack gets attempted murder, meaning that the legal system encourages people to use acid rather than knives
- That there is no legislation to prevent having the acid in a different container than the one it was purchased in
People who have committed acid attacks have been prosecuted and jailed: Man jailed for first acid attack killing in UK after nurse died of her injuries
Everything you know about acid attacks is wrong an article by the BBC which attempts to debunk what it sees as misinformation about acid attacks doesn't debunk claims that the UK is failing to act on acid attacks.
Is this an accurate summary of the UK's action and/or inaction on acid attacks, or is the media misrepresenting the situation, trying to paint the UK as a dystopian failed state? And apart from not wanting to criminalise legitimate ownership of acid, is there any reason why the UK has not acted on the issue?