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Population and education, Social Statistics
Iben Birgitte Pedersen
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Reported Criminal Offences (Quarterly)

The statistics have been prepared on the same basis since 1995. Due to changes in the grouping of the criminal offences caution should be shown by comparing figures over time before this year.

Comparability - geographical

No international comparable quarterly based statistics are available.

Eurostat collects annual data from the member states on reported criminal offences and publishes statistics based on this. However, according to the EUROSTAT metadata, the range of items included in the different groups of crime differs between countries and comparisons based upon absolute figures are therefore misleading.

Comparability over time

Due to the introduction of the new penal code in 1933, it has only been possible to make comparisons with earlier estimations (back to 1921) at group level, e.g. the groups of Sexual offences, Crimes of violence, Offences against property and Other (penal code) offences.

The definition of violent crime was changed in 1979. Violent crime is henceforward only to include acts which are intentional physical attacks or threats, while other types of violent crime should be included in the category 'Other crimes'. The change resulted in a decrease in the number of violent crimes of approximately 800 and a corresponding increase in the number of 'Other crimes'.

In 1981, the classification of the groups Sexual offences and Other crimes was changed.

As a consequence of law amendments or wishes for more information on specific kind of offences the division of type of offences has been altered during the years

Among major changes are: In 1986, offences against public decency was divided into a number of more specific types of offences. In 1989, amendments to the penal code took effect which concerned the crimes of violence especially in respect of sections 244-246. This caused a break in the statistics which it is difficult to assess the extent of. Lack of registration of vehicle and offences against departmental order regarding registration of vehicles were until 2012 classed with the Road Traffic Act. Hereafter with the Tax Act. It caused an increase of 2,-4,000 annual reported criminal offences. Section 265 regarding restraining order in the Penal Code is replaced by the law on expulsion, restraining order and ban on stay in 2012. In 2013, the chapter on sexual offences in the Penal Code was amended. This caused changes in the statistics in the grouping of this kind of offences.

The provisions of the Danish Criminal Code regarding sexual offences went through essential amendments taking effect from 1 July 2013. The amendments resulted in e.g. more categories of sexual offences than previously being placed under the provisions about rape (section 216). See more: Rape

A new concept of consent regarding rape is taking effect from 1st of January 2021 which has resulted in new ways for the police to register offences regarding rape. This has to be taken into account when comparing data over time.

A new concept regarding stalking is taking effect from 1st of January 2022. Stalking is included in the category 'Coercive control etc'. The increasing number of offences in this category is due to this new concept.

From 4 July 2023 ‘by false pretences’ (intercourse or other sexual act) is considered rape.

On January 1, 2018, the special burglary-section 276a was introduced into the Criminal Code. The new section meant that the removal of things from a foreign house was now also termed burglary, only the presence in the house had been unjustified. It was therefore no longer a condition for the presence to be obtained by force for example by breaking up windows or doors. In practice, it meant that a large number of reported crimes that were previously theft were now categorized as burglaries.

Since 1 January 1990, the reports have been issued by the Central Register of Reported Offences.

Coherence - cross domain

The statistics on reported criminal offences are also published annually. On account of its function as an administrative register, the reported criminal offence register is continuously updated and there will consequently be some variation in the number of annually reported criminal offences depending on whether the figure is computed as the sum of the quarterly extracts or the annual extract. The annual statistics exceeded the sum of the four quarters by 6 percent in 2023.

Besides Statistics Denmark, the statistics on reported criminal offences are also published by the National Commissioner of the Danish Police. There could be small differences in the figures, because Statistics Denmark excludes, e.g., administrative information, which cannot be defined as real 'reported criminal offences'.

Coherence - internal

Data are internally consistent.