Foreigners convicted of nearly half of all rapes and murders in Switzerland last year

By Thomas Brooke
4 Min Read

Foreign nationals were convicted of almost half of all rapes and homicides reported in Switzerland last year as federal government data reveals the drastic overrepresentation of migrants from predominantly Muslim countries in the country’s crime statistics.

A total of 93,693 people were convicted of crimes in Switzerland last year according to data published last month by the Federal Statistics Bureau. This related to a total of 103,156 crimes — with some people sentenced for multiple offenses — which represents an increase of 3 percent over the previous year.

Of those convicted, just 39,798 were Swiss nationals, meaning 57.5 percent of all solved crimes were committed by foreign nationals.

The data was analyzed by Marc Vanguard, a French-speaking statistician with a particular focus on immigration and security.

His breakdown showed that foreign nationals were convicted of 47 percent of all solved rapes and 44 percent of murders in the country in 2022. In addition, 45 percent of assaults and 41 percent of aggravated thefts with a known suspect were committed by foreigners.

The figures reveal a disproportionate number of migrants committing crimes in the country, given Switzerland’s foreign-born population is estimated at around 26 percent.

When categorized geographically, it showed that migrants from predominantly Muslim countries were more likely to be convicted of these serious crimes. Maghreb migrants — those originating from the North African Arab nations of Tunisia, Morocco, and Algeria — were seven times more likely to have committed these crimes than a Swiss national.

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Migrants from sub-Sahara Africa were five times more likely, Afghan and Pakistani nationals were three times more likely, and Romanian and Bulgarian nationals were two times more likely to be convicted of serious offenses.

There was no difference in the likelihood of these crimes being committed by a Swiss national when compared to foreign nationals from the rest of the European Union, or Russia and Ukraine, while Chinese nationals were less likely to commit these offenses than Swiss citizens.

According to Vanguard’s analysis, African migrants were also three times more likely to be convicted of drug offenses, and two-and-a-half times more often convicted of traffic offenses than the Swiss.

Switzerland has some of the strongest crime data in Europe. Vanguard explained how conviction rates are calculated by “dividing an exact number of convictions over an exact population,” with only Swiss residents in possession of a “renewable long-stay residence permit” being taken into account.

This means two things: The data is as transparent as is feasibly possible, but comes with the caveat that undocumented migrants living unlawfully in the country are excluded from it, inevitably distorting the figures on the proportion of crimes committed by foreign nationals to an extent.

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The French statistician revealed that the same nationalities overrepresented in the Swiss crime data also top the lists in other European nations, citing Germany, Italy, Austria, and Denmark as examples.

“The comparison with German data shows a disturbing similarity,” he remarked.

“The link between immigration and insecurity is undeniable. It is time to disseminate these figures very widely to contribute to collective awareness,” he added.

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