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Crime Rate Drops

Crime in New Zealand: 1994-2000

New Zealand's crime rate is falling, according to Crime in New Zealand, a new report published by Statistics New Zealand.

The number of offences per 1,000 population dropped from 129 in 1996 to 111 in 2000. Police resolved 41 per cent of all offences recorded in 2000, compared with 37 per cent in 1996.

Crime in New Zealand details recent trends in recorded crime in New Zealand, using data provided by the New Zealand Police. Most of the data in the report covers the seven-year period from 1994 to 2000.

Dishonesty offences made up 60 per cent of all offences in 2000, followed by drug and anti-social offences (12 per cent), violent offences (10 per cent) and property damage (9 per cent).

The offence rate for dishonesty offences dropped from 83 per 1,000 population to 66 per 1,000 population between 1996 and 2000. Half of all dishonesty offences in 2000 were thefts and a further quarter were burglaries.

Drug and anti-social offences were dominated by cannabis-related offences and disorder offences. Between 1994 and 2000, cannabis-related offences fell while disorder offences rose. The contribution of non-cannabis drug related offences increased from 6 per cent to 8 per cent of all drug related offences over the period.

There was no significant change in the violent crime rate between 1994 and 2000. It remained steady at between 10 and 11 offences per 1,000 population. Sexual offences accounted for less than 1 per cent of all recorded crime in 2000 and there was little change in the rate of sexual offending.

Crime in New Zealand is the first of a series of web-based analytical reports Statistics New Zealand will produce during the next three years. These reports will examine social trends and issues of current interest. The next report will look at the transition to employment of school leavers with no or low qualifications.

The new report on crime is available now on the Statistics New Zealand website, A printed version of Crime in New Zealand will be available on request from 20 August 2001.

Brian Pink
Government Statistician

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