Victims of rape are to get greater support after it was announced an advocacy scheme is to go national.

The National Advocacy Project, led by Rape Crisis Scotland, was set up in 2016 to support victims through the criminal justice process and has proven hugely successful.

After an evaluation, it will now receive further funding of £1.7m and be rolled out across the country.

Sandy Brindley, Rape Crisis Scotland co-ordinator, said: “Reporting a sexual offence and going through the resulting justice process can be difficult, and it’s crucial that people have dedicated support in place to assist them throughout this process.

“We are delighted that we will be able to expand the project, to allow us to more fully meet the needs of people through Scotland who have experienced rape or sexual assault.”

A report on the investigation and prosecution of sexual crimes last year criticised the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) for being slow and bureaucratic and failing to communicate well enough with alleged victims.

Michael Matheson, justice secretary added: “Sexual assault and rape are horrific crimes which as a society we must do all we can to prevent, while also ensuring a robust response to investigate, detect and bring to justice perpetrators.


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