TALLINN 's Despite a predicted increase in crime in Estoniafor 2009, murder rates are at an 18 year low.
Eighty-six people were murdered in 2008 in Estonia,the lowest figures since 1991.
The police registered 72 manslaughter cases and 12 murder cases during theyear, plus 16 attempts at manslaughter and four attempted murders. Incomparison with 2007 the number of manslaughters declined by six cases and incomparison with 2006 by 11 cases.
"The indicators for last year are the best in Estonia since the regaining of independence; in 1994, 426 peoplewere killed in Estonia forinstance," Justice Ministry deputy secretary general Martin Hirvoja toldreporters on Jan. 19.
Of the manslaughter and murder cases, 40 percent were recorded in HarjuCounty that includes the capitalTallinn and 23 percent in East-Viru County. In Tallinn the most casestook place in Lasnamae and North Tallinn, where eight people lost their livesaltogether.
Of the victims across Estonia,63 were men and 21 women. Russian-speakers numbered 46 and Estonian-speakers 33. Eight victimswere aged over 70 and four under 18.