This is an archived release.
224 000 persons were sentenced last year
Never before have so many sanctions been registered in Norway as in 2003, 25 per cent more than in 2002, and 7 per cent more than in the previous top year 2001. Almost 224 000 persons were sentenced once or more in 2003, which makes 6 per cent of the population above the age of consent. 27 000 persons were sentenced more than once, and the total amount of sanctions was 257 000.
(Revised 14 December 2005)
Of all sanctions registered in 2003, 29 400 were a result of crimes and 228 000 of misdemeanours. Narcotic crimes made the largest portion of all crimes, 42 per cent, whilst violation of the Road Traffic Act made 88 per cent of all misdemeanours.
Never before have so many sanctions been registered as in 2003, 25 per cent more than in 2002, and 7 per cent more than the previous top year 2001. The main reason of this large increase is that 30 per cent more traffic misdemeanours were settled with on the spot fines. 172 000 such ticket fines were given in 2003. The increase is not necessarily caused by a larger number of offences against the Road Traffic Act, but could also be a result of intensified control by the Police. The large increase, more than a doubling, of Community sentences is due to this type of sanction being introduced in 2002. Both the number of unconditional and conditional imprisonments increased by 14 per cent, and ticket fines by 12. The other types of sanction either had a slight increase or even a decrease, as was the case for fines. Since the statistics give information about all legal sanctions registered during the course of the statistical year, changes from one year to another may be due to irregular registration.
Sanctions, by type of sanction. Numbers and
per 1 000 population 15 years
and over. 1998-2003 (Revised 14 December 2005)
|Sanctions, total||218 138||215 070||206 367||239 240||205 988||257 046|
|Prosecution conditionally dropped||319||233||219||219||159||164|
|On the spot fine||158 105||153 338||142 420||158 637||139 587||181 960|
|Ticket fine||40 656||41 284||45 485||56 639||46 942||52 587|
|Sentence||19 058||20 215||18 243||23 745||19 300||22 335|
|Per 1 000 population|
|Prosecution conditionally dropped||0.09||0.07||0.06||0.06||0.04||0.04|
|On the spot fine||44.38||42.78||39.55||43.85||38.33||49.63|
Nine out of ten were fined
Fines or ticket fines amounted to 92 per cent of all sanctions in 2003. On the spot fines for less serious traffic- and misdemeanours against the Duty Act, were the most frequent type of sanction used.
182 000 on the spot fines made 71 per cent of all sanctions. 52 600 ticket fines were given. Of 18 700 imprisonments, 10 300 were unconditional. About 2 000 sanctions were fines and 1 650 community sentences. For the remaining 160 cases prosecution was dropped.
More than half the crimes and almost all misdemeanours (96 per cent) were settled with fines in 2003, most of them by ticket fines or on the spot fines.
Through time there has been a marked increase in use of fines instead of imprisonment for crimes. Within the last ten year-period, the portion of imprisonments for crimes decreased from 61 to 43 per cent.
Narcotic crimes dominates
The continual increase of sanctions due to narcotic offences has flattened out. But still this group of crime was the reason to most sanctions, 42 per cent of crime cases in 2003, followed by crimes for profit, 28, and crime of violence with 16 per cent. Economic crimes amounted to 5 per cent of all criminal cases, damage to property made 3 and sexual crimes 2 per cent.
Sanctions, by group of offence. Numbers and per cent. 2003.
(Corrected 23 September 2004) (Revised 14 December 2005)
|Group of offence||Numbers||Per cent|
|All types of crime||257 046||29 380||227 666||100.0||100.0||100.0|
|Economic offences||1 696||1 382||314||0.7||4.7||0.1|
|Other offences of profit||23 280||8 213||15 067||9.1||27.9||6.6|
|Offences of violence||4 696||4 687||9||1.8||16.0||0.0|
|Offences of narcotics||12 265||12 265||-||4.8||41.7||-|
|Damage to property||980||867||113||0.4||3.0||0.0|
|Work environment offences||112||-||112||0.0||-||0.0|
|Traffic offences||200 307||-||200 307||77.9||-||88.0|
|Other offences||12 307||1 388||10 919||4.8||4.7||4.8|
More women were sentenced
19 per cent of the sanctions in 2003 were imposed to women, that is 1 per cent more than the previous year and the highest female portion registered so far. Last years rise is related to the large increase of traffic offences, where the share of woman already was large. The greatest portion of women had traditional offences for profit by 23 per cent, followed by traffic offences and narcotic offences, 19 and 18 per cent respectively. Few women are sentenced for sexual and violence offences, though offences of violence committed by women have increased the most the last six years.
Population aged 40+ caused the largest increase
Proportionately to population, the twenty year olds got most sanctions last year. 132 sanctions per 1 000 population were imposed to persons aged twenty at the time of act. Persons aged 21-29 made a steadily decreasing proportional from 122 to 103 sanctions per 1 000. The population aged 40 or over ended on 50 sanctions per 1 000 inhabitants. In 2003 this group, however, had the largest increase in number of sanctions per 1 000 inhabitants compared to 2002, with 35 per cent. On the spot fines because of traffic misdemeanours increased the most, but also other types of sanctions had a considerable increase.
One of two were also sentenced in the preciding five year period
Of the 211 000 sentenced in 2003 with certain information about identity, 105 000 or 49 per cent were also sentenced once or more of the previous five years. 56 000, or 27 per cent were sentenced in one of the years. Almost one per cent, or 1 600 persons, were sentenced in all five years.
Sanctioned in 2003, by number of years
with sanction previous five years
|Sanctioned, total||1 211 080||100.0|
|0 year||78 535||37.2|
|1 '||55 889||26.5|
|2 years||28 107||13.3|
|3 '||13 383||6.3|
|4 '||5 493||2.6|
|5 '||1 566||0.7|
12 286 persons with unestablished identity
and 281 firms.
Persons sentenced for narcotic offences in 2003, had the strongest tendency to repeatedly get sanctions.
Three out of four imposed to narcotic sentences, were also sentenced in the previous five-year period. The large groups sentenced for offences of profit and traffic offences, makes a share of previous sentenced of 66 and 47 per cent respectively.
One should consider that some of those sentenced in 2003 could have been prevented from further sentences in parts of the previous five year period, for instance by imprisonment, not being in the country or by not having reached the age of consent.
One of ten sanctions given to a foreign citizen
23 400 sanctions were imposed to foreign citizens, which make almost one out of ten. Foreign citizens must not be mistaken for being immigrants. An immigrant can have a Norwegian citizenship, whilst a foreign citizen does not need to be an immigrant.