Switzerland saw a rise in crime in 2022, FSO study reveals

Switzerland saw a rise in crime in 2022, FSO study reveals

New figures from the Federal Statistical Office (FSO) have revealed that Switzerland experienced a rise in crime in 2022. Swiss police noted that last year saw an increase in criminality in a number of areas, with cases of drunk driving, theft and forgery rising the most.

Crime rates in Switzerland rise by 3 percent

According to the FSO, 103.156 convictions were issued across Swiss cities and cantons in 2022, a 3 percent increase compared to 2021. The FSO noted that the rise can largely be blamed on the lifting of COVID restrictions, which allowed people to move and travel more freely. They added that despite the recent increase, overall crime rates are still 4 percent lower than in 2019.

In terms of the most common punishment for crime, the Swiss are fans of a fine. In 2022, 87.775 fines were handed out compared to 14.257 prison sentences, with conditional fines now making up 69 percent of all punishments issued since 2007. 

Forgery and driving offences increase

When compared to 2021, rates of theft and the forgery of documents saw the biggest rises at 13 and 44 percent respectively. Watson added that thanks to the end of COVID restrictions, more people were driving, so the number of road-traffic offences also rose by 6 percent.

Of these, the FSO noted a significant rise in the number of people being caught under the influence of drugs, medicine or alcohol while behind the wheel. In fact, there was a 25 percent increase in the number of drunk driving convictions in 2022 compared to 2021.

Switzerland sees surprising fall in narcotic cases

However, while the crime rate has risen overall, there were some areas where rates have fallen. The number of people convicted under the Narcotics Act - the set of laws related to the consumption and use of banned drugs - fell by 13 percent in 2022.

Watson noted that the results are surprising, given the fact that Geneva has recently replaced Amsterdam as the cannabis capital of Europe and "how to deal with the rise in crack cocaine consumption" remains one of the most heated topics in parliament.

For information and specific data on crime rates, check out the FSO website.

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Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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