Germany: infractions against immigration legislation prevent the crime rate from falling for a second successive year

According to the latest statistics published by the German Bundeskriminalamt, the 487,711 infractions (crimes) against immigration legislation registered in 2016 in the country have led to a slight rise (0.7%) in penal infractions, maintaining a stable upward trend from the previous year, when the high number of immigration-related crimes altered the year’s global figures.

ManillesThe trend demonstrated last year continues in all fields. Therefore, violent crime has seen a 6.7% rise. Homicides of all kinds have seen a rise of 14.3% (it must be kept in mind that this figure includes 72 homicides committed by the nurse from Lower Saxony and the 17 linked to the Munich Olympiazentrum incidents). Sexual abuse and rape have increased by 12.8% and assaults by 9.9%. The only exception is that of theft with violence and intimidation, which have dropped by 3.7%.

Crime against property has dropped significantly. Different types of robbery have gone down by 4.4% (the biggest drop corresponds to burglaries, by 9.5%; that linked to different ways of making payments has dropped by 8.5%, and robberies of professional offices and storage areas, by 6.5%). Fraud has gone down by 7% and economic crime, by 5.6%.

Crime against intellectual property (+7.2%) and damages (+3.4%) have also seen a rise, which is most significant in overall numbers in the second case (+19,350 crimes).

The number of people arrested (2,360,806) has gone down very slightly (-0.3%) by 8,230 people. Most of those arrested are men (74.9%) and adults over 21 (77.4%). The number of people arrested under the influence of alcohol has risen by 2.4% (242,494 in total) and arrests of non-nationals have risen by 4.6%, which amounts to 40.4% compared to the 59.6% corresponding to German nationals. The age group which has seen the highest rise in arrests is under 14 (a rise of 14%), while pre-adults (18 to 21) has risen slightly (0.3%). The most important drop applies to the group between 14 and 18 (3.8%).

In reference to the länder, Baden-Württemberg appears as the land with least crime (55.99 per thousand); in second place, we find Hessen (66.72 per thousand); in third place, Renania-Palatinat (67.75 per thousand) followed by Bavaria in fourth place, which has seen a 9.5% rise (the previous year Bavaria was in first place without taking into consideration immigration-related crime, but not if these offences are included). Without immigration-related crime, Bavaria would still be a land with a low crime rate (4.85 per thousand). Once again, the impact of the wave of refugees makes its present felt, but –it must be stressed− not so much in terms of the number of crimes, which has dropped slightly (-43,093 without immigration-related crime), as the rise is mainly explained by infractions committed against immigration legislation.

The länder with the highest rate of penal infractions are, like last year, the city states of Berlin (161.61 per thousand), Bremen (136.87 per thousand) and Hamburg (133.84 per thousand), although Bremen and Hamburg have switched positions.

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