This is an archived release.
The lowest level since 1994
In 2008, 386 000 offences were reported to the police; a decrease of 3 per cent compared to the previous year. The number of reported offences is now the lowest since 1994, when demographic trends are taken into account.
In 2008, more than 264 000 crimes and 122 000 misdemeanours were reported to the police; a decrease from 2007 of 2.8 and 3.5 percent respectively. There was a considerable decrease in offences for profit (2.7 per cent), narcotic crimes (8 per cent) and traffic misdemeanours (5.1 per cent).
Fewer aggravated larcenies, from automobiles in particular
More than 175 000 larcenies and other offences for profit were reported to the police in 2008, almost 4 900 fewer than the previous year. The reduction in the number of offences for profit is principally connected with a decrease of 8 per cent in aggravated larcenies. Among the aggravated larcenies, the decline was strongest for automobiles and other means of transport, with 20 per cent. In addition, almost 7 per cent less motor vehicle thefts were reported. The number of aggravated larcenies from automobiles and other means of transport (12 500) and motor vehicle thefts (6 900) have together almost halved since 2003.
But more aggravated larcenies from villas ...
The number of aggravated larcenies from villas, increased from 2 200 in 2007 to 3 400 in 2008, i.e. 53 per cent. Almost the entire increase occurred in Oslo, Akershus and Vestfold, where in total over 900 more incidents were reported to the police. This contributed to an increase in the total number of aggravated larcenies from dwellings - which climbed back to the level of 2005.Larcenies in proximity to dwellings have had a large and long-lasting decline up to 2007. More aggravated larcenies from villas resulted however in an increase in the total number of larcenies in proximity to dwelling, from 18 300 to 19 500 incidents (see figure).
... and simple larcenies from shops
From the turn of the millennium and up to 2007, the number of simple larcenies from shops and petty larceny was reduced by more than a quarter. From 2007 to 2008 however, both the number of simple larcenies from shops (12 per cent) and petty larceny (5 per cent) increased - from the total of 16 400 to 17 500 incidents.
Largest decline in offences for profit in Rogaland and Østfold
More than a quarter of all registered offences for profit are being committed in Oslo, which had a decline of nearly two per cent from the previous year. In numbers, the clearly largest reductions were in Rogaland and Østfold (with 14 and 11 per cent respectively), which represents half the total decline of offences for profit in the whole country. Whilst the registered offences for profit committed in Norway decreased, the number of offences for profit committed abroad increased - from 7 600 to 8 800 incidents.
Fewer narcotic crimes reported
The 37 500 narcotic crimes registered by the police in 2008 represents one of the lowest figures in the last ten years, and is on a par with the period 2003-2005 (see figure). Due to a drop in reports to the police in the last three months of the year, 3 300 fewer narcotic offences were reported in 2008 than in 2007. Oslo, Akershus and Vestfold still have most narcotic offences despite an overall reduction of 2 800 incidents reported to the police than the previous year. However, 7 counties had an increase of more than 4 per cent.
The decrease from the previous year was somewhat larger for narcotic offences regulated by the Act relating to medicinal goods etc. (9 per cent) than for the more severe narcotic offences regulated by the Penal Code (7 per cent). Reported violations of the two laws now make up almost equal shares of 19 200 and 18 300 narcotic offences respectively.
Stability in reported violent offences
During 2008, 26 200 threats and other violent offences were reported to the police, almost 2 per cent more than the previous year. When the population increase is taken into account, the extent of violent offences reported to the police has remained relatively stable since the turn of the millennium, at about 5.5 per 1 000 population.
As in all previous years, Finnmark and Oslo have the most reported violent offences in proportion to population. In 2008, the share was 8.9 and 8.7 violent offences per 1 000 population respectively. In 2008, the counties of Telemark and Troms followed, where the corresponding figures were 6.8 and 6.6. Oppland had the smallest share, with 3.6 violent offences per 1 000 population (see figure).
New registration of violence in family relations
In the last years prior to 2008, there was a decrease in the number of threats reported to the police, and an increase in the number of incidents of physical violence. However, in 2008 both threats and physical violence increased by nearly 2 per cent compared with the previous year. Almost 7 200 threats and 18 400 incidents of physical violence (crimes of violence against the person, assaulting a public servant and physical ill-treatment within family relations) were reported to the police.
The number of reported incidents of ill-treatment within family relations increased, simultaneous to a decrease in both assault and wounding or inflicting bodily harm (see figure). The redistribution in registration of types of violent offences thus seems to continue into 2008, subsequent to the new regulations on ill-treatment in family relations (from 2006).
Nearly 1 000 reported rapes
More than 3 900 sexual offences were reported to the police in 2008, nearly 4 per cent more than the previous year. Since the beginning of the 1990s, the number of reported rapes has increased, but an equal number of incidents was reported in 2007 and 2008 (940). In 2008, 810 incidents of sexual intercourse with children were reported to the police, and 93 incidents of incest; the same level as in the previous five years.
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Reid Jone Stene
tel.: (+47) 99 02 22 01
Siri Fjærtoft Fossanger
tel.: (+47) 99 72 49 27