There are calls tonight for an inquiry into the way police handle sexual assault complaints after an ABC investigation revealed an alarming number of cases are being rejected.

New figures show that police do not believe almost 10 per cent of sexual assaults reported to them.

Over a decade, 140,000 were reported, but less than a third led to an arrest or legal action.

Many reports of sexual assault are also being withdrawn but the figures could be much higher as New South Wales is the only state or territory that doesn't record data on why a sexual assault investigation didn't lead to legal action.

Read more here:

For more from ABC News, click here:

You can watch more ABC News content on iview:

Go deeper on our ABC News In-depth channel:

Code: SPORTDX. Promo code is required. Discount is applied only to a certain category of goods.

More videos

Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

AP Top Stories May 11 A