TALLINN - The number of criminal offenses registered during the first ten months of this year is by 14 percent smaller than last year, but the number of offenses committed against persons has grown significantly, reports Postimees Online. According to statistics compiled by the Ministry of Justice, the number of thefts, fraud and illegal entries has fallen while the number of cases of physical abuse and threatening has increased.
Minister of Justice Kristen Michal stated that it is pleasing that the total number of criminal offenses is demonstrating a downward trend in comparison to previous years. “However, while total crime numbers are falling, the deviation of this positive trend involves an increase in driving under the influence of alcohol, an increase in the cases in physical abuse and in threatening,” he said.
“The increase in the number of criminal offenses targeted against other persons may refer to the actual growth in such offenses, or else to the increased awareness of people of their rights,” noted Michal. “According to earlier studies on victims, only one in four victims report an assault or a threat made against them to the police and, hence, it is difficult to assess the exact changes in violent crimes on a short-term basis,” he explained.