Why do criminals commit crimes

Criminal Foreigners: These are the Facts

Do migrants commit more violent crimes than Germans? Bavaria's Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann spoke in an interview with the “Passauer Neue Presse” of an “increased risk” and referred to the crime statistics. Thuringia's AfD boss Björn Höcke also made a similar statement at an election event on Sunday in Cottbus.

FACTS: The number of violent crime cases has decreased over the past two years. Violent crime in the police crime statistics (PKS) includes, among other things, dangerous and serious bodily harm, robbery, murder, manslaughter, rape and sexual assault.

Foreigner Crime: These are the Facts

Basically, the following applies: Only the cases registered by the police are recorded in the statistics - the unreported crime area is left out. "The PKS does not offer an exact reflection of the reality of crime, but rather a more or less close approximation to reality depending on the type of crime," says the PKS for 2018.

The Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) deals with crime in the context of immigration in a 2018 federal situation report. This shows that in certain violent crimes, immigrants are disproportionately often among the suspects. This applies, for example, to crimes against life (14.3 percent). Compared to the previous year, however, this is a decrease (2017: 15.0 percent).

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In the case of bodily harm and robbery offenses, the proportion with at least one suspect immigrant was 10.7 percent in 2018 - a slight increase compared to the previous year (2017: 10.3 percent) and a five-year high. When it came to crimes against sexual self-determination, last year it was 11.8 percent with a suspect immigrant (2017: 11.9 percent).

However, the federal situation picture also shows one reason for the excessive proportion of suspect immigrants in certain violent crimes: the age and gender structure of this group. The immigrants suspected of having committed crimes against life were almost without exception male (97 percent) and more than 70 percent were younger than 30 years. The group of young men between 14 and 30 - regardless of their origin - is the one most frequently involved in violent crime, according to crime statistics.

Migrant crime: there is a risk group

If you look at the general demographics of those seeking protection in Germany, the picture becomes more solid: According to figures from the Federal Statistical Office, their average age at the end of last year was 29.4 years. The proportion of men was almost 63 percent. At the end of 2017, the German population was on average 45.4 years old and around 49 percent male (latest available figures).

Furthermore, a distinction has to be made among immigrants between those who are recognized as living here and those who have no prospects in Germany. While those with prospects tend to commit (violent) crimes below average, those with no prospect of a place to stay or a job are more likely than average to commit such crimes.

Crime: These factors influence the risk

"Now it is obvious that people from other cultures are coming to us, in whose homeland non-violence as we cultivate it is not yet so natural," said the Bavarian Minister of the Interior in an interview. With this he indicates that the willingness to use violence can be culturally conditioned. The sociologist Clemens Kroneberg expresses concerns about this: "Whether someone becomes violent depends on many factors."

There are great social differences within the countries, and one cannot speak of a culture of a country which per se leads to violence. "Identifying the culture of origin as the central cause tends to stir up fears, reinforce prejudices and lead to a general suspicion of people from certain cultures."

The result of the fact check:

CLAIM: There is an increased risk of violent crime among migrants.

RATING: partly correct

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From RND / dpa