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Punishments could be posted online

Criminals could see their sentences posted on a Government-backed website so the public knows they are being punished.

Policing Minister Nick Herbert told MPs the coalition hoped to build on the success of its crime-mapping website which shows how many offences have been committed in particular streets.

He said the website - www.police.uk - had received nearly 400 million hits since its launch five weeks ago.

Mr Herbert said: "This website is a strong example of this Government's commitment to greater transparency in public services, giving communities the information they need to hold their local police to account."

Speaking at Home Office Questions in the Commons, Mr Herbert said the coalition planned to release more information through the website.

He said: "Six trail-blazing police forces are looking at how this can be done, including looking at how we can provide sentencing outcome information so the public would know not just that the crime was committed, but what happened afterwards in the criminal justice system."

The crime-mapping website was launched on January 31, but was hit by a series of first-day problems as it crashed under huge demand.

The site revealed a string of anomalies, including a spike in anti-social behaviour on a street featuring a 999 contact centre because hoax emergency calls were recorded as anti-social behaviour.

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