FOUR out of five hate crimes in Thurrock are race-related.

New figures show that between October 2012 and September 2013, 243 race crimes were reported to the police.

Total hate crimes were up 28 per cent to 300, compared to 235 a year earlier.

Of those, 13 related to the victim’s sexuality and 17 related to a disability.

Speaking at the latest Thurrock Council meeting, Assistamt Chief Constable Maurice Mason said: “Hate crime is one area when I joined the job I wanted to get under control and it’s an area where we are getting our act together, because we are getting people in diverse communities to have more confidence to report these matters.

“We have officers in the county who work in that field that comb our incident records each day for anything that could be hate crime.

“They then flag it up and prod and poke us until officers are out there dealing with and investigating it.

“If anyone is subject to hate crime, please report it. We have dedicated extra resources to be able to identify and deal with this.”