Burglaries hit record low in 2020 but violent crime rose

Nearly 33,000 burglaries were recorded in Switzerland last year, down nearly 10% on 2019. The archive photo from 2013 shows the crime scene of an attempted bank robbery near Geneva. Keystone/Martial Trezzini

The total number of reported criminal offences in Switzerland in 2020 was down slightly compared with the previous year, national statistics show. But the police were kept busy ensuring the population respected government Covid-19 restrictions.

This content was published on March 22, 2021 - 11:19

Burglaries fell by nearly 10% compared with 2019 to around 33,000 cases. This was in line with an ongoing downward trend. However, the number of violent crimes reported to the police, including homicides, rapes and serious physical attacks increased by nearly 9% to 1,668 in the same period.

The annual compiled figures were published by the Federal Statistical Office and cantonal policeExternal link services.

Nearly 24,400 online offences were also reported last year, according to police crime statistics.

More than 16,000 cases involved cyber fraud, in particular linked to online shopping, real estate advertisements and romance scams, the office said in a statementExternal link on Monday.

The president of Switzerland’s police commanders, Mark Burkhard, welcomed the overall decrease in reported crimes.

However, he noted that the enforcement of anti-Covid restrictions remained a challenge for police.

He warned not to underestimate the police efforts in this area, even though they do not show in the annual statistics.

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