Crime in Austria

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Crime in Austria is fought by a range of Austrian law enforcement agencies. Austria enjoys a low overall crime rate.[1] Most criminal activity is focused in the larger metropolitan areas.[2]

Crime dynamics[edit]

Petty criminals, such as pickpockets and purse snatchers can be found in the highly populated areas, including areas frequented by tourists, bus and train stations, and on subways.[3] Residential burglaries continue to be a significant concern, especially in the more affluent areas.[4] The US government rates Vienna as being "medium" for levels of residential crime.[5]

In 2004 Austria had the lowest rates of car theft in the EU.[6] The 2007 international child pornography investigation was initiated by authorities in Austria.[7] The nation is targeted by foreign criminals, with 64 percent of drug-related offences being carried out by criminals who are born overseas.[8] According to British criminal Colin Blaney in his autobiography Undesirables, British thieves and confidence tricksters have targeted Austria on account of the fact that it is viewed as a soft touch due to its relatively low crime rates.[9]

Crime by type[edit]


Main article: Corruption in Austria

Austria has a well-developed institutional and legal system, and most corruption cases under investigation by a parliamentary committee end with judicial trials and effective judgments. However, there are several significant Austrian corruption cases which have taken place during the past decade involving land and regional officials, high-level public officials, the central government and, in one instance, the former Chancellor.[10]

In most cases, corrupt practices were related to conflicts of interest, abuse of office, money laundering and influence peddling. The corruption scandals have put into doubt the ethical standards of the political elite.[11] This doubt is reflected in the findings of Eurobarometer 2012, where two-thirds of respondents perceive national politicians to be corrupt and also the most corrupt institution in Austria.[12]