Notable drop in crime in Germany

Polizeiliche Kriminalstatistik 2017The German Bundeskriminalamt has just published the crime data corresponding to 2017. Despite all the forecasts predicting that the waves of refugees over recent years would cause a dangerous increase in crime, figures show a drop of 9.6% with reference to the previous year (5,761,984 incidents compared with 6,372,526 the previous year).

Important drops can be seen in practically all criminal categories, with the exception of economic crime (28%, but in overall figures, 74,070), firearm-related crime (trafficking) and against public health (drugs), pornography and very slightly in crimes involving fraud (20.6% of which are committed via Internet), computer crime (especially among nationals) or against the authority of the State (especially among foreigners).

Crimes against property (theft, robbery without violence, burglaries of homes and businesses) continue to constitute an important fraction of the crime committed (36.3%) and just over two million offences were recorded (2,092,994), a figure that suggests a reduction of 11.8% in reference to the previous year. Decreases are manifested in all criminal categories (the23% drop in burglaries is noteworthy), both when the authors of such crimes are nationals or foreigners.

An important number of crimes continue to take place in the street, 20.9% of the total.

Crimes against immigration law saw a drop of 63.1% (going down from 487,711 to 179,848), which shows that the rhetoric announcing an overwhelming effect due to the arrival of refugees was a mistaken forecast.

Violent crime saw a more moderate decrease, 2.4% in total, especially due to the fall in theft with violence (9.7%). Homicide, on the other hand, only fell by 1.6%.

Crimes against public health (drugs) saw an increase of 9.2%, amounting to 330,580 cases. Most are related to the trafficking of cannabis and marihuana (204,904), amphetamines and by-products (47,662) and, in third place, of cocaine and crack (19,644). The following factors are stressed as being among the causes for such an increase:

  • The increase in police pressure
  • The increase in the availability of such drugs
  • Sales via Internet
  • The recent incorporation of customs officers in the fight against drug trafficking

Finally, it must be stressed that the crime rate per thousand inhabitants is 68.82(the previous year, 77.54) and that the percentage of foreigners arrested is down from 40.4% the previous year to 34.8%.

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