Allegations of dating site rapes up sixfold
The number of allegations of stranger rapes linked to dating websites has soared sixfold in five years, Britain's top crime-fighting body has warned.
National Crime Agency figures show that 184 people reported being raped by someone they had met on a dating app or website in 2014 - up from 33 in 2009.
Sean Sutton, head of the NCA's Serious Crimes Analysis Section, believes that it could herald the emergence of a "new breed" of rapist, as these alleged sex offenders are less likely to have a criminal record.
A new NCA report, Emerging New Threat In Online Dating, highlights the growing problem and the force is launching a campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of online dating.
Mr Sutton added: "Part of our campaign is to encourage people to come forward.
"Our message is that the police will take them seriously and deal with them sympathetically.
"It is potentially quite a different type of character who is perpetrating these offences from our usual, if I can use that term, stranger rape case."