CSO figures indicate rise in sex offences, robberies and kidnappings

There has been an increase in crime across the board according to the CSO.

The number of sex offences, robberies and kidnappings have jumped by double figures in the first three months of the year.

Fraud and deception, as well as robbery, extortion and hijacking, is where the most significant increases in crime have been recorded in the first quarter of the year.

Those categories are up 15.9% compared to the first three months of 2017.

Sex offences have risen by 14.7% - there were over 3,000 of them between January and March.

Meanwhile - attempts or threats to murder, assault or harass have increased by 13.5% to just over 19,000.

The number of murders was the only area to see a fall - down 17% to 72.

The Central Statistics Office say these figures are "under reservation" because of concerns over the quality of data from the Gardaí.

Speaking in relation to today's CSO figures, Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan said: "As I have stated on many occasions, I believe it is hugely important for the management of criminal justice policy, and for Garda operations, that we have regular publication of the crime statistics to allow for a targeted response to crime.

"While the CSO figures released today remain “Under Reservation”, I am confident that the work being done by An Garda Síochána, in conjunction with the CSO and the Policing Authority, will soon return the recorded crime statistics to the higher standard expected of our crime statistics."

Minister Flanagan said that the decrease in homicide offences indicates that Gardaí are making "significant progress in tackling the insidious threat of organised crime, particularly in Dublin’s North Inner-City, where a proactive approach is being taken to combat those who seek to carry out such shocking murders and prevent further loss of life.

Indeed, I welcome the huge efforts made by An Garda Síochána to prevent further loss of life; in particular the preventing of over 50 murders since Operation Hybrid commenced.

He said that the rise in recorded incidents of sexual assault, and particularly rape, is something that the Government is taking very seriously.

"I have recently brought forward the Heads of a Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) (Amendment) Bill. This Bill will provide for stricter sentencing for repeat sexual offenders.

"However, I would make the point that an increase in recorded incidents of sexual assault can also indicate an increase in the reporting of sexual crimes, and I would continue to encourage anyone who has been a victim of sexual assault to come forward and report the incident to An Garda Síochána."

You can read the CSO crime figures here.

Digital Desk

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