DUBLIN: The COVID-19 pandemic is reported to have reduced burglaries in Ireland, but there has been an increase in murder and drugs and weapons offences.
The figures from Central Statistics Office (CSO) show that burglaries in Ireland have dropped by more than 20% in the first three-quarters of this year. Burglaries dropped by 3,385 (20.4%) over the same period as last year, according to CSO.
At the same time, there has also been a rise in the number of murders and drug and weapons offences.
The figures show that all areas of crime have been affected by public health emergencies. It shows a sharp decline in robberies, thefts, extortion and hijacking offences. Thefts and related offences decreased by 12,183 (17.7%) and robbery, extortion and hijacking offences decreased by 281 (12%).
The number of sexual offenses decreased by 12% and murder attempts, threats, assaults and harassment decreased by 8%.
Property damage crimes declined by more than 9%, while public order offences decreased by almost 8%.
Although murder attempts are declining, the number of homicides has risen sharply. Last year it was five and this year it has increased to 74.
Drug offences increased by 1,818 (8.7%) while weapons and explosives offences increased by 332, a rise of more than 12%. Reports of false imprisonment rose by almost one-third to 115 cases.
Justice Minister Helen McEntee said the statistics on crime in many categories are general and welcome. However, the Minister said the crimes are not over and the criminals will continue to seek ways to exploit them.
“An Garda Síochána have played a vital role in supporting communities throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” Ms. McEntee said.