Criminal Cases in Japan Hit Postwar Low in 2021

Society

Tokyo, Dec. 13 (Jiji Press)--Criminal offenses recognized by police in Japan in 2021 decreased 7.5 pct from the previous year to hit a post-World War II low of 568,104, a Justice Ministry white paper showed Tuesday.

The total number of Penal Code offenses fell for the 19th straight year after peaking in 2002, according to the White Paper on Crime 2022. By contrast, cybercrime and child abuse cases continued to increase.

The drop in recognized criminal cases mainly reflected a decrease in cases of theft, which account for nearly 70 pct of the overall Penal Code offenses. “Cases of bicycle theft, car break-in and car component theft dropped sharply,” a ministry official said.

Meanwhile, the rate of reoffending, or the proportion of repeat offenders among all people against whom law-enforcement authorities took action for Penal Code violations remained high, at 48.6 pct, down only 0.5 percentage point from 2020.

In 2021, the number of cybercrime incidents surged 23.6 pct to 12,209, and that of child abuse cases grew 1.9 pct to 2,174. Cybercrime cases have been on an uptrend since 2003, while child abuse cases have been rising sharply since 2014.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press