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Crime in Sweden - statistics & facts

Crime has always been a relevant topic in Sweden, but in recent years it has become an ever more pertinent political issue. When compared to other Nordic countries, Swedes are twice as likely to feel threatened by crime, vandalism, and violence where they live. The number of reported crimes in Sweden generally increased over the past decades, which can be explained by several factors: a significant increase in the Swedish population, which naturally results in more crime and convicted criminals, as well as a new culture of reporting crimes to the authorities.

Based on data from 2020, over 1.5 million crimes were reported in Sweden that year, which was a slight decrease compared to the previous year. When looking at the figures from a population perspective, that was a little over 15 thousand crimes committed per 100 thousand inhabitants. At 27 percent, the largest share of crimes reported to Swedish authorities was filed on the grounds of theft, while 19 percent involved crimes against people.

When asked in a 2019 survey which crimes Swedes had experienced themselves, the results showed a somewhat different picture. According to respondents, only 1.5 percent of Swedes had experienced theft crimes, while 9.2 percent had been threatened. Considering gender, men were more likely to get mugged, while both women and men were equally exposed to threats. The greatest difference, however, appeared regarding sexual abuse. In 2019, 9.4 percent of Swedish females reported cases of sexual abuse, compared to only 1.4 percent of their male counterparts.

Another gendered difference concerns crime suspects. In 2020, 154.3 thousand males were suspected of a crime in Sweden, in contrast to 45 thousand females. Out of the roughly nine thousand people who were sentenced to imprisonment in 2020, only 631 were female. That was a decrease compared to the previous year whenthe highest number of female imprisonments peaked over the course of 10 years, while the number of male convicts dropped in that time period.

In terms of convictions, drug-related crimes accounted for 31 percent of all imprisonments in 2020. At 19 percent, the second most prevalent reason for ending up behind bars was theft, followed by life and health threatening crimes at 12 percent. Furthermore, 10 percent of all imprisonments that year was due to traffic crimes, while four percent was based on fraud.

Key figures

The most important key figures provide you with a compact summary of the topic of "Crime in Sweden" and take you straight to the corresponding statistics.

Violent crimes

Drug-related crime

Robberies

Imprisonment

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 38 most important statistics relating to "Crime in Sweden".

Crime in Sweden

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Crime in Sweden - statistics & facts

Crime has always been a relevant topic in Sweden, but in recent years it has become an ever more pertinent political issue. When compared to other Nordic countries, Swedes are twice as likely to feel threatened by crime, vandalism, and violence where they live. The number of reported crimes in Sweden generally increased over the past decades, which can be explained by several factors: a significant increase in the Swedish population, which naturally results in more crime and convicted criminals, as well as a new culture of reporting crimes to the authorities.

Based on data from 2020, over 1.5 million crimes were reported in Sweden that year, which was a slight decrease compared to the previous year. When looking at the figures from a population perspective, that was a little over 15 thousand crimes committed per 100 thousand inhabitants. At 27 percent, the largest share of crimes reported to Swedish authorities was filed on the grounds of theft, while 19 percent involved crimes against people.

When asked in a 2019 survey which crimes Swedes had experienced themselves, the results showed a somewhat different picture. According to respondents, only 1.5 percent of Swedes had experienced theft crimes, while 9.2 percent had been threatened. Considering gender, men were more likely to get mugged, while both women and men were equally exposed to threats. The greatest difference, however, appeared regarding sexual abuse. In 2019, 9.4 percent of Swedish females reported cases of sexual abuse, compared to only 1.4 percent of their male counterparts.

Another gendered difference concerns crime suspects. In 2020, 154.3 thousand males were suspected of a crime in Sweden, in contrast to 45 thousand females. Out of the roughly nine thousand people who were sentenced to imprisonment in 2020, only 631 were female. That was a decrease compared to the previous year whenthe highest number of female imprisonments peaked over the course of 10 years, while the number of male convicts dropped in that time period.

In terms of convictions, drug-related crimes accounted for 31 percent of all imprisonments in 2020. At 19 percent, the second most prevalent reason for ending up behind bars was theft, followed by life and health threatening crimes at 12 percent. Furthermore, 10 percent of all imprisonments that year was due to traffic crimes, while four percent was based on fraud.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 38 most important statistics relating to "Crime in Sweden".

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