UK modern slavery offense charges jump 27% in past year

Anti-slavery activists rally outside Parliament on October 18, 2013 in London, England.

(CNN)New figures from the British Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) released Thursday showed charges for modern day slavery offenses in the UK have risen significantly in the past year.

Between 2017 and 2018, 239 suspects were charged -- a 27% rise on the previous year -- while 185 modern slavery and human trafficking convictions were seen in the same period.
Referrals to the CPS from police and other agencies also increased to 355, "the highest ever recorded," although the percentage charged (67.3%) was the lowest since 2013-2014.
    "Modern slavery has a devastating, lasting impact on its victims," said Directo