New laws welcomed

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DERBYSHIRE police have welcomed the news that stalking is now recognised as a criminal offence.

The government has introduced two new offences – stalking and stalking involving a fear of violence.

Stalking carries a maximum sentence of six months or a £5,000 fine. Where there is a fear of violence, the jail term is up to five years or an unlimited fine.

Detective Inspector Hayley Barnett said: “As a force we welcome the new offences, hopefully they will help in sending out a clear message that stalking is a serious crime. Stalking is life changing as it impacts upon the the victims physical and emotional wellbeing and can be for a long term.”

If you are a victim of stalking call police on 101.