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The police and the CPS have defined a hate crime as "any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by hostility or prejudice, based on a person's disability or perceived disability; race or perceived race; or religion or perceived religion; or sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation or transgender identity or perceived transgender identity." A hate crime can be committed by a wide variety of people, including a friend, acquaintance, or complete stranger and the term covers a wide range of crimes, including verbal abuse, harassment, intimidation, making threats and bullying another individual. In 2016-2017, in 83% of cases that were prosecuted, the perpetrator pleaded guilty or was found guilty by a jury of their peers. The CPS are able to put in an application to the courts for a sentence uplift, whereby the imposed sentence on the perpetrator is increased due to the serious and violent nature of hate crimes.
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