CRIME recording in Essex is among the best in the country, a report has revealed.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary has reviewed samples from 13 forces to find out if police are fiddling the figures.

It looked at how often crimes were being reported, but not recorded, how often they were being classified incorrectly and how often officers marked calls down as “no crime”.

Essex Police had the second best record with one in 12 crimes reported not being recorded and five out of 73 calls marked as no crime incorrectly.

It was only beaten by Gwent Police.

Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh said: “Public confidence in what we do sits at the heart of what Essex Police stand for.”

When the 13 forces reviewed are considered as a whole, the results were abysmal, with 14 rapes being ignored out of the national sample.

The report states: “We are seriously concerned at the picture which is emerging.

“It is difficult to conclude none of the failures was the result of discreditable or unethical behaviour.

“The failure rate was too high.”

It says problems with police forces include weak or absent management, inadequate training, pressures of workload and deliberate fixing.

Nick Alston, Essex’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “The inspection found crime is largely recorded accurately and ethically in Essex.

“Across the 13 forces inspected, the implication drawn is 20 per cent of crimes may be going unrecorded.

“I agree this is a matter of serious concern.”

The report comes after whistleblower and Met PC James Patrick, from Brightlingsea, made his concerns public about his force fiddling figures.