Figures - Security and justice

Almost half of the total expenditure on public security went to prevention in the period 2005–2015. This was mainly for the deployment of police and private security services. In 2015, over 2.8 billion euros was spent on investigation activities and 2.3 billion euros on enforcement of criminal penalties.

In recent years, more police resources have been focused on combating so-called High Impact Crimes: violent and sexual offences, domestic burglary and robberies, i.e. serious offences with a major impact on victims. The High Impact Crime rate has declined: since 2010, the number of robberies has dropped by nearly 60 percent, domestic burglaries have dropped by almost one-third and violent and sexual offences by 22 percent.

In 2016, The Hague had a crime suspect rate of 206 per 10 thousand inhabitants, the highest rate of all Dutch municipalities. Amsterdam and Rotterdam also have relatively high crime suspect rates. Utrecht has a far lower rate at 119 suspects per 10 thousand inhabitants. Up in the northern provinces, the city of Leeuwarden has relatively many registered crime suspects.

Convictions by courts of first instance

  2011 2012 2013 2014 2015
  x 1 000        
Total convictions 94.4 88.7 89.0 85.9 88.8
Penal Code 65.8 62.1 61.7 59.5 59.0
of which          
property offences 32.8 31.1 32.1 31.0 30.5
vandalism and public order offences 10.8 10.0 9.3 8.9 8.6
violent and sexual offences 18.9 18.3 17.9 17.6 17.6
Traffic offences 15.2 15.1 16.1 14.7 16.5
Drugs-related offences 6.7 6.7 6.9 7.2 7.7
Other offences 6.7 4.9 4.3 4.4 5.6

In 2015, 88.8 thousand people were found guilty of a criminal offence by a court of first instance. The majority of crime convictions were for property, violent and sexual offences.

In the same year, Dutch courts imposed 118.6 thousand sanctions for criminal offences. The most common sanction was imprisonment, followed by community service and fines. In recent years, the share of prison sentences has risen from 23 percent in 2007 to 30 percent in 2015.

Crime victim rate by police district

The crime victim rate is above average in police districts in and around the four largest cities. Crime victim rates are below the national average in a number of districts, especially in the northeast, southeast and southwest. Rates range from 12 percent in the district of Zeeland to 31 percent in the district of Amsterdam West.

The share of people who have at one point become crime victim has declined almost continually for more than ten years. In 2005, nearly three out of ten Dutch citizens stated they had been victims of a criminal offence. By 2016, this was less than two in ten, a decline of 37 percent. In line with falling crime rates, the number of people who sometimes feel unsafe has become progressively lower.

The introduction of smoke and fire detection systems has led to more fire alarm call-outs at fire stations. Many have turned out to be false alarm, however. Fire services have been successful in reducing the number of fire alarms for several years. In 2016, almost 36 percent of reported fire incidents were handled by the control rooms.

In 2016, the Netherlands received more than 31 thousand new asylum seekers and following family members. This is nearly half the number in 2015, when almost 57 thousand persons requested asylum in the Netherlands. Syrian asylum seekers have constituted the largest group in recent years. During the 1990s, the majority of asylum seekers were from the former Yugoslavia.


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Explanation of symbols

empty cell Not applicable
. Data not available
* Provisional figure
** Revised provisional figure (but not definite)
2016-2017 2016 to 2017 inclusive
2016/2017 Average for 2016 to 2017 inclusive
2016/’17 Crop year, financial year, school year, etc., beginning in 2016 and ending in 2017
2014/’15-2016/’17 Crop year, financial year, etc., 2014/’15 to 2016/’17 inclusive

Due to rounding, some totals may not correspond to the sum of the separate figures.

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