Reported offences

In 2017 approximately 1,510,000 offences were reported to the police, the customs authority or the prosecution service. This represents an increase of 4, 710 reported offences by comparison with the figure for 2016.

In particular, increases were noted in the offence categories crimes against the person and traffic offences. The increase in the category crimes against the person can partially be explained by the introduction of a new offence, unlawful use of another's identity (6 b §), under Ch. 4 in the Penal Code, on July 1 2016. During the same period, the number of reported offences decreased in the categories theft and criminal damage.

The types of crimes for which the number of reported offences increased the most between 2016 and 2017 were hit- and run offences (5 §), computer fraud, crimes against the narcotics drugs (Penal) act, possession and personal misuse and other damage (not graffiti).

The types of offences that decreased most were offences against the state, local authority, county council (not graffiti), other graffiti, fraud by use of a fraudulent invoice, pickpocketing and assault against men 18 years or older.

Since 2008, the number of reported offences has increased by approximately 137,000 (+10%). Since 1975, the trend in the total number of reported offences has been characterised by a continuous increase. However, the rate of increase, i.e. the percentage change over time, was strongest to the end of the 1990s, the rate of increase after that was lower, until another increase started in the mid-2000s.

Reported offences

Number of reported offences in Sweden, per 100,000 population, 1995–2017.

The increase has occurred across the majority of offence categories during the period between 1975 and 2014. Reported car crimes including vehicle theft and theft out of and from a motor vehicle, however, have fallen since 1975, and are thus exceptions to this general trend. The number of reported assaults, including aggravated assaults, has increased four-fold since 1975 and the number of reported sexual offences has undergone a seven-fold increase.

Reported crimes against the person are numerically dominated by assaults, unlawful threats and non-sexual molestation. Over the course of 2017, a total of approximately 84,200 assault offences were reported, which constitutes a decrease of 5 per cent by comparison with the figure for 2016. Assaults on women aged 18 years or over decreased by 4 per cent to approximately 28,000 reported offences. In addition, there were a total of 1,880 reported cases of gross violation of a woman’s integrity. The number of reported assaults against men aged 18 years or over amounted to approximately 32,600 offences which is a decrease of 10 % since the previous year.

About 22,000 sexual offences were reported in 2017, which represents an increase of 8 per cent since 2016. There was a 10 per cent increase in the number of reported rape offences, with 6,810 reported rapes being registered in 2017. The number of reported crimes of sexual coercion, exploitation, abuse etc. increased by 9 per cent by comparison with the figure for 2016 to approximately 1,400 cases.

Slightly over 486,000 theft offences were reported in 2017, which represents a decrease of 17,100 reported offences in relation to the figure for the previous year. This category of crimes accounts for 33 per cent of the total number of reported offences. Subsequent to this point, the number of theft offences has declined. Approximately 12,100 car thefts were reported in 2017, along with nearly 51,800 thefts from motor vehicles. The number of car thefts declined by 1 per cent, and the number of thefts from motor vehicles increased with 1 per cent compared with the figures for 2016.

In 2017, the number of reported robberies is slightly higher compared with 2016, 8,650 offences. Muggings, which comprise approximately 70 per cent of reported robbery offences, increased by four per cent to 6,200 in 2017. A total of 724 robberies of shops and stores were reported in 2017, which constitutes a decrease of 12 per cent by comparison with 2016. A total of 11 bank robberies were reported in 2017. A total of approximately 4,020 incidents of violence against public servants (police, security officers etc.) were reported in 2017. This represents a decrease of 11 per cent by comparison with the number reported in 2016.

A total of about 22,600 residential burglaries (thefts committed in connection with break-ins) were reported in 2017, which represents an increase of 3 per cent by comparison with the figure for 2016. The number of reported fraud offences increased by 2 per cent since last year, with 209,000 offences being reported.

Reported criminal damage offences decreased by a total of 7 per cent, to 181,000 crimes.

In addition, reported drug offences increased by 11 per cent by comparison with the figures for 2016, to approximately 100,000 reported offences. Road traffic offences increased by 13 per cent, with a total of approximately 89,900 offences being reported during the year.