Crime rate down, but scams still a ‘significant concern’: MHA

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SINGAPORE: Crime in Singapore remained low and the overall crime rate fell last year, although online scams were still a concern, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said in a press release on Wednesday (Feb 8).

In 2015, crime rose by 4 per cent to 33,608 cases, largely fuelled by an increase in online commercial crimes which saw a 95 per cent surge to 3,759 cases, according to annual crime statistics released by the police last year.

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Although the number of commercial crimes saw a slight decline in 2016, online crime – e-commerce cheating, Internet love scams and China officials impersonation scams – continued to be a “significant concern”, MHA said.

Compared to 2015, the number of violent and serious property crimes, housebreaking and theft cases fell. The number of immigration offenders has also remained low and fewer were arrested for harbouring and employing immigration offenders.

The number of drug abusers arrested last year fell slightly, although the number of new drug abusers increased, MHA said. Close to two-thirds of all new abusers were aged below 30.

The ministry also said roads were safer last year, with fewer fatal accidents and fatalities. However, the number of fatal accidents involving elderly pedestrians increased.

There were fewer fire fatalities and injuries compared to the previous year, MHA added.

MHA did not provide specific numbers in its release. It said the various Home Team departments will issue their annual statistics reports in the coming week.

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