The UK’s biggest police force has admitted it has lost two-thirds of its finance officers, just at a time when fraud has become the most common reported crime.

The Metropolitan Police had 91 financial officers in 2007-2008. In February this year that number had fallen to just 30.

The worry is that despite fraud accounting for about a third of crimes, forces prefer to focus on ‘sexy’ offences such as terrorism and drug gangs.

The Crime Survey for England and Wales estimated there were 3.3 million incidents of fraud, about one third of all crimes, in the year to last June.