Latest statistics show increase in gun crime

Sharp drop in murders but 28 per cent increase in car hijackings and related crimes

Possession of a firearm increased by 21 per cent to 214 cases in the 12-month period to the end of June. File photograph: Gary Fox/PA Wire

Many forms of serious crime have increased, though the murder rate has fallen significantly in the Republic.

Burglaries were up by nine per cent, to 27,890 cases reported to the Garda, in the latest 12-month period for which crime trends are now available.

The latest data, published by the Central Statistics Office, also revealed further increases in the level of those offences most closely associated with organised crime gangs.

Possession of a firearm increased by 21 per cent to 214 cases in the 12-month period to the end of June, compared to the 12-month period to the end of June last year.


It may suggest resurgence in gun crime after a sharp decline since the 2007-2008 period when the drugs trade collapsed along with the wider economy.

However, the latest data also reveals cases of discharging a firearm were down by two per cent.

Controlled drugs offences overall were down by 1.2 per cent to 14,488 crimes.

Cultivation of drugs and possession of drugs for personal use were down, by 19 per cent and one per cent respectively.

However, the crime of drug dealing - possession of drugs for sale or supply - increased by one per cent, to 3,448 cases.

There was a very sharp decline in murders; down by 37 per cent to 38, from 60 cases in the previous periods

Sexual offences increased by three per cent and within that rise was a jump of seven per cent in the crime of rape of a male or female, to 478 cases. Other sexual assaults were also up, by seven per cent.

Driving a vehicle under the influence of drugs and drink were both down; by 13 per cent and four per cent respectively.

Some 6,450 motorists were detected driving over the legal alcohol limit in the 12-month period while 232 were caught driving under the influence of drugs.

Car hijackings and related crimes increased by 28 per cent, to 110 cases. There were 7,392 cars stolen in the period, three crimes lower than the previous year.

Homicide offences - of which murders are but one category - have decreased to 60 from 93, a fall of 36 per cent.

Attempts of threats to murder, assaults and harassments are up 10 per cent, to 16,054 offences.

Kidnapping and related offences have decreased by four per cent, to 131 offences.

Fraud and other deception related crimes have shown an increase of six per cent, to 5,337 crimes. Public order crime has decreased by five per cent, to 32,866 offences.

Conor Lally

Conor Lally

Conor Lally is Security and Crime Editor of The Irish Times