Posted by debito on February 13th, 2007
Hi Blog. So much for those (like the NPA and the GAIJIN HANZAI rags) that assert that foreign crime is on the increase. Not this time around:
Number of crime cases involving foreign suspects down in ’06: NPA
Kyodo News/Japan Times Feb 9, 2007
Police took action in 40,126 criminal cases in which the perpetrator
was believed to have been a foreigner, excluding permanent residents
and members of the U.S. military, down 16.2 percent from the record
high logged the previous year, the National Police Agency said Thursday.
There was a large drop in cases of suspected theft from cars and
vending machines, which contributed to the overall decline, the NPA
said, adding that police and volunteer groups have increased street
patrols and crime-prevention programs.
The number of foreigners who are suspected of committing crimes in
Japan but have left the country reached 656 as of the end of 2006,
according to NPA statistics, which have been kept since 1980 and do
not cover permanent residents or U.S. military personnel here.
The NPA said 38 of the people who left Japan have been charged by the
authorities of their home countries at the request of Japan since
1999, including 19 Chinese, 14 South Koreans and one Japanese-Brazilian.
The number of cases of foreigners charged under the Penal Code fell
16.9 percent to 27,459 last year. , while those under other laws,
mostly related to illegal drugs, dropped 14.6 percent to 12,667 cases
and involved 18,895 suspects, down 10.8 percent.
Money-laundering up Kyodo News A record 137 cases of money-laundering
were uncovered last year, up 25 from the previous year, with the
underworld accounting for some 40 percent, the National Police Agency
The NPA attributed the uptrend over the past few years to stepped-up
efforts by police to investigate mob-related money flows.
In 90 cases, suspects attempted to disguise or conceal criminal
proceeds by using the bank accounts of others, and similar means. In
46 cases, money was knowingly received from crime suspects, the agency said.
The Japan Times: Friday, Feb. 9, 2007
Yet, as Japan Probe reports, the Japanese press (the Mainichi Shinbun, at least, notorious these days for this sort of thing) has to bend over backwards to make a sensation about foreign crime:
Earlier this week, I posted a link to an article that cited statistics that showed a 16.2% decrease in crime by foreigners in the last year. Here’s how Mainichi Shinbun covered the story, as pointed out by From the inside, looking in:
For a taste of Japanese journalism, I point you to the reporting of the statistics by the Mainichi newspaper.
The Japanese version.
毎日新聞 2007年2月8日 10時53分
The English version.
Number of crimes committed by nonpermanent foreigners declines in Tokyo
The number of crimes committed by nonpermanent foreign nationals in 2006 declined in Tokyo, the National Police Agency (NPA) said on Thursday.
Police investigated 27,459 cases nationwide of suspected crimes allegedly committed by nonpermanent foreign nationals in 2006. The number is 16.9 percent down from the previous year.
By region, Tokyo’s figure, 3,802 cases, was 10 percent less than in 1991. But in the Chubu region of central Japan, the number stood at 7,716, a staggering 35.4 times the number of 1991.
The 279 cases in the Shikoku region shows a rise of 21.5 times that of 1991. The number for other regions such as Hokkaido, Tohoku, Chugoku, Kinki and Kyushu, all increased from 15 years ago. The number for the Kanto region actually rose if Tokyo’s figure was excluded.
The figures reflect the surge in foreigners living in areas outside of Tokyo.
“We have beefed up our efforts in Tokyo, forcing foreign criminal groups to flee to other regions,” an NPA official said.
Of the 27,459 suspected crimes, 67.9 percent were committed by groups of at least two foreigners.
In 2006, 40 foreign nationals left Japan after allegedly committing crimes, the NPA said. The number of foreign nationals who have been accused of committing crimes in Japan and of fleeing totaled 656 by the end of 2006. (Mainichi, February 8, 2007)
JAPAN PROBE COMMENTS:
The Japanese headline reads: Foreigner Crime: Increasing in the regions (ie outside Tokyo) – Up 35-fold in the Chubu Region in 15 years
The English headline: Number of crimes committed by nonpermanent foreigners declines in Tokyo (I see they can’t even concede that it decreased on a national aggregate level)
Hmm…interesting how a sensationalist headline about rising crime by foreigners can magically “translated” into a less offensive English headline about a decrease in crime!
I commented on Japan Probe shortly afterwards:
Arudou Debito Says:
February 10th, 2007 at 1:09 pm
Heard this from a Mainichi reporter during my travels (he came to one of my speeches, took me out for dinner afterwards):
There was a recent crime involving two Japanese, one Chinese.
The headline (assigned by a different person than the reporter) was “Chuugokujin ra ga…” commit the crime.
When he asked the editor why this misleading headline was being created, he said the editor said:
“Inpakuto ga chigau kara”
(The impact is different.)
Yes, it certainly is. Mainichi has been receiving a lot of flak from human rights groups for its misleading headlines. Thanks for pointing them out. Debito in Wakayama
Foreigners just can’t win, I guess. Even when the crime rate goes down… Shame that this is even happening in the most liberal of the national newspapers, the Mainichi. Debito in Kurashiki