Decrease in reported offences
207 000 offences were reported to the Norwegian police during the first half of 2003. This is a decrease of 11 per cent from the first half of 2002. For the second year in a row, there is a decline in narcotics offences.
The number of offences reported to the police varies from year to year, but such a decrease from one year to another as happened in 2002 and 2003, is rare. Crimes declined by 12 per cent, and misdemeanours by eight per cent. The change from 2001 is three per cent and four per cent respectively. The preliminary figures are normally 1-2 per cent lower than the final figures, hence it looks like it is 2002 that have the high figures. It is uncertain to what extent the high figures in 2002 and the following decline in 2003 is due to changes in the registration system or to other reasons.
|Offences reported to the police, by group of offence. First half of 1996-2003|
|First half of 1996||First half of 1997||First half of 1998||First half of 1999||First half of 2000||First half of 2001||First half of 2002||First half of 20031|
|Total||195 564||206 539||214 330||207 524||219 391||213 528||232 802||206 823|
|Crimes||138 753||147 338||152 137||148 637||160 222||153 788||170 271||149 227|
|Misdemeanours||56 811||59 201||62 193||58 887||59 169||59 740||62 531||57 596|
|Group of offence|
|Economic offences||3 556||3 697||4 044||3 911||4 599||4 538||4 822||4 267|
|Other offences for profit||105 661||111 658||111 466||105 987||114 869||104 545||118 045||106 357|
|Offences of violence||9 898||9 816||10 690||10 289||12 296||12 635||13 424||12 482|
|Sexual offences||1 976||1 796||1 624||1 561||1 509||1 591||1 639||1 770|
|Offences of narcotics||13 993||16 337||19 848||20 584||22 220||25 086||25 255||19 190|
|Damage to property||10 987||13 972||15 445||15 667||13 867||12 607||11 624||11 505|
|Environment offences||1 235||1 127||1 224||1 180||1 155||1 402||1 289||891|
|Work environment offences||499||526||582||492||448||518||453||365|
|Traffic offences||26 647||27 920||30 357||28 599||28 830||28 862||31 820||29 381|
|Other offences||21 112||19 690||19 050||19 254||19 598||21 744||24 431||20 615|
|1||Preliminary figures for first half of 2003. The figures given for previous years are definitive, and normally one to two per cent higher than the preliminary ones.|
Decline in offences for profit
There were 106 000 reported offences for profit. This is 10 per cent less than the previous year, but the numbers are two per cent higher than in 2001. Theft is the largest type of offence in this category and constitutes about 40 per cent of all reported offences and almost 60 per cent of all crimes. Simple larceny decreased by six per cent from previous year, and aggravated larceny dropped by nine per cent. The figures for simple larceny have not been so low since 1997, but the numbers for aggrevated larceny are - in spite of the decrease from last year - still higher than in both 2000 and 2001.
Less narcotics offences
For the second year in a row, there is a decline in narcotics offences. There were 19 000 cases first half of 2003. This is a decrease by 24 per cent compared to first half of previous year.
The decrease is particularly due to use and possession of drugs, which dropped by 31 and 20 per cent respectively, compared to first half of 2002. Crimes of narcotics dropped by 25 per cent, and serious crimes of narcotics by 13 per cent. The overall figures have not been this low since 1997. The exception is serious crimes of narcotics, which are still higher than in 2001.
However, the number of reported narcotic offences might be directly affected by changes is the police registers (see below) and is also highly sensitive to the priorities of the police. Hence, it is difficult to tell if the decline is due to an actual decrease in crimes of narcotics, or have other causes.
Rise in sexual crimes
There were 1 800 reported sexual crimes first half of 2003. This is an increase by eight per cent compared to similar period in 2002. Sexual crimes is the only group of offences that rose first half of 2003. However, sexual crimes are often reported a long time after the crime was committed and hence the numbers reflect to a less extent the number of sexual crimes committed the year they were reported. The numbers in a particular year is also attributed to the inclination to report such offences. As an example, about 50 per cent of the sexual crimes reported in 2003 were commited before 2003.
Re-adjustment of the police registration system
From October 2002, the police registration system underwent a technical re-adjustment in relation to the police reform the same year. As expected, this has caused an overall decrease in numbers.
Statistics Norway has been aware that if an offence is being reported in one police district and then the case is transferred to another police district, the case is being registered again in the new district (see About the statistics ). This kind of double entry registration was sought eliminated through the re-adjustment of the registration system. This was accomplished in February through March 2003 and such double entry registrations has then been substantially reduced as the new routines for registration are being implemented. This has the greatest effect on offences that is most likely to be transferred to another police district. This is particularly so for narcotic offences (see also: Criminal prosecutions ). However, it is not likely that this phenomenon alone can explain the reduction in numbers from 2002 to 2003.
In a longer perspective the decline in 2003 is less dramatic than it appeard at first sight. This suggests that the figures for 2002 are somewhat high. Even though it cannot be established with certainty, there might be a possibility that the re-adjustment of the registration system also affect the figures for 2002.
There might be other reasons for the fluctuations in the past couple of years than changes in the registration system.
This page has been discontinued, see Offences and victims reported to the police, Annually.
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