Criminals involved in cases of rape, wounding with intent, and drug smuggling were cautioned by police in London last year, new figures show.

Figures obtained by Conservative London Assembly member Tony Arbour under the Freedom of Information (FoI) act show the Metropolitan Police gave out 29,560 cautions across the capital in 2013/14. 

Cautions were given in two cases of rape and for a total of 286 sexual offences, almost 1,400 cases of  grevious bodily harm (GBH), and 4,957 offences relating to theft and handling stolen goods. 

A total of 301 drug traffickers were cautioned and the overall number of cautions handed out has increased from the previous year by 562.      

Mr Arbour, who obtained the figures from The Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (MPOAC), said criminals were being "let off" and has urged the police to publish crime figures regularly. 

The majority of cautions, 13, 975, were given for offences involving violence against a person, despite cases of domestic abuse rising across all London boroughs. 

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: "A caution is a serious matter; they are not taken lightly and we are conscious of the consequences that this judicial disposal can have on a person's future.

"It should also be recognised that they are used predominately to deal with first time offenders and as an alternative to court appearance where guilt is admitted."

Breakdown of cautions

Rape  - 2

Other sexual offences  - 284

Wounding/GBH - 1,356

Assault with injury - 5,345

Arson - 23

Criminal damage to a property - 1, 032

Drug trafficking - 301

Theft from shops - 2,992