Number of rapes in Spain increased by more than 53 percent since 2019

by Lorraine Williamson
crime and rapes

MADRID – Spain has had a Ministry of Equality since 2008, which is committed to preventing and eradicating various forms of violence against women, among other things. However, despite this, the number of rapes in the country now appears to have increased by 53.3%. 

Recorded crimes against sexual freedom increased by 13% in Spain in 2022 compared to 2021. The rate of penetrative sexual assaults actually rose to 33.9%. Moreover, since 2019, reports of rapes have increased by 53.2%. This is evident from the Crime Balance of the fourth quarter of 2022. The report was published on Friday by the Ministry of the Interior. 

Related post: ‘Solo si es si’-law leads to reduced sentences for rapists 

In total, the Home Office records 17,389 sexual freedom offences in 2022 (an increase of 28.4% since 2019), 2,870 penetrative assault offences and 14,519 other sexual offences (9.6% more than in 2021 and 24.4 % more since 2019). 

According to the ministry, the greater willingness of victims to report as a result of active policies to raise awareness and reduce social tolerance for these types of crimes translates into a greater willingness of victims to report. This reduces underreporting in these types of criminal cases. 

Crime balance sheet 

The Crime Report includes the evolution of criminal offences recorded in Spain over the past year by the various police services in the country. These are the National Police, the Guardia Civil, the police services that depend on the autonomous communities (Ertzaintza, Mossos d’Esquadra and Navarra Foral Police) and the local police forces. 

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Conventional crime 

The total number of registered criminal offences in the period from January to December 2022 is 2,325,358 crimes. Of these, 1,949,852 (83.9%) correspond to the conventional crime category. This category includes all criminal activities that are not committed in cyberspace. They have decreased by 1.6% compared to the reference year 2019. That was the last year not affected by the restrictions related to the corona pandemic. 

The decline in conventional crime is supported, among other things, by the decline in property crime, which represents 44% of the total in this category and, as a whole, decreased by 9.1% compared to 2019. Thefts in homes and businesses have decreased by 15.3%, other thefts at 8.3% and car thefts at 11%. 

Cybercrime and drug-related offences are on the rise 

On the other hand, 375,506 registered criminal offences have been committed that fall under the heading of cybercrime (16.1%). Drug trafficking crimes also increased, by 14.4% compared to 2019. 

Spain has a low crime rate 

In 2022, the security forces were aware of a total of 48.8 criminal offences per 1,000 inhabitants. That means that the crime rate in the country is low compared to other countries in Europe. For example, the figure is 79.5 in the UK, 60.7 in Germany, 53.9 in Denmark and 74.8 in Belgium. 

More police 

The Interior has provided more resources to the National Police and the Guardia Civil. Since 2018, they have seen their staff grow by an additional 12,463 compared to December 2017, to 154,535 in September 2022. The combination of both bodies is expected this summer to exceed the maximum historical number of agents reached in 2011. 

The National Police and the Guardia Civil have expanded their specialised forces in the fight against cybercrime, from 714 officers at the end of 2017 to 1,352 in 2022. 

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