Efus Country Profile: France

Also in... (Français)

Last update : 02.10.

1.Crime statistics

Crime rate (2008) : 57.51  ‰ (2007 : 58.33‰; 2006 : 61.03‰; 2005 : 62.35‰)
In France crime rate is the ratio between offences and the national population according to census
Offences (2008): 3.558.329
Since 2002 offences decrease of 14,21%
Main Offences (2008):
Thefts : 1.847.205. Since 1998, thefts decrease (-19,39%)
People offences : 408.251, in the past ten years, people offences increase (+84,77%)
Economic offences : 381.032. Since 2005, economic offences increase (+19,56%)
Others (including drugs) : 921.841. More or less stable since 2002
Custodies (2008): 577.816. Since 2004, custodies increase (+22.40%) and cause many arguments between politics, and between law enforcement forces and Justice
Offenders (2008):
Total : 1.172.393. Since 2004 number of offenders increase of 15,17%
Minors percentage (10-18) : 17,73%. The ratio minors/offenders decrease since 2006 (2006 : 18,33%; 2007 : 18,04%), but the number of minors increase (+12.52% between 2004 and 2008).
Foreign offenders: 20,57%
More about crime stats Prison population (2009) : 62.252
Occupancy level (2009) : 119,72%
More about prison stats Age of criminal responsibility : 13 years old
National victimisation survey : 2007 / ONDRP (Observatoire National de la Délinquance et des Réponses Pénales / National Observatory of deliquency and judicial responses)

2. Safety and crime prevention

Police forces:
_ Police (2009): 161.736
_ Gendarmerie (2007): 105.021
_ Total: 266.757  (4,31  per thousand inhabitants)
Judicial system workforce: 72.749 (11,8  judges for 100.000 inhabitants)
Private security forces (2006) : 150.000
Relevant NGO’s operating in the field of crime prevention: French Forum for Urban Safety (FFSU) depending of the European Forum for Urban Safety ( EFUS)

3. Competence of State, regional and local authorities

National action plans :
1990 :  Implementation, at local level, of the Houses for right and justice, for juridical assistance and advice
1997 : Implementation of the Local safety contracts and the proximity police
2002 : Implementation of the Local councils for safety and prevention of the delinquency.
2006: Implementation of the Departmental Safety Committee
2007: March 5th 2007 Law is about prevention of the youth delinquency, violence against women, sexual abuses and drugs uses. Furthermore, mayor becomes the key actor of the prevention policy. Every town which had more of 10.000 inhabitants had to create a Local council for safety and prevention of the delinquency.
2009: Implementation of the Safety Chiefs Staff
2010: National Plan for Deliquency prevention and victims help
Regional level sphere of competence : The priorities defined in the region/state contract have to be respected by the local safety contract
“Prefet” is a key actor in safety policy; he leads regional/departmental council.
Local authorities : ability to create a CLSPD (Local Council for safety and delinquency prevention)? CISPD (Inter-Local Council for safety and deliquency prevention), manage CCTV system
Role of elected officials (city mayors) : The mayor can create and head a municipal police , and he is the first police authority in his town
4. Partnerships and co-operation in the field of crime prevention
National Crime Prevention Council : SG-CIPD (Secrétariat Général du Comité Interministériel de Prévention de la Délinquance / General Secretary of Inter-Ministerial committee for deliquency prevention) and FIPD (Fond Interministeriel de Prévention de la Délinquance / Inter Ministerial Deliquency Prevention Fund)
National action plan : co-operation between several secretaries : Home affairs, defence, justice, education, labour, urban policy

Two national organisms :
Inside the urban policy secretary :  Délégation Interministérielle à la Ville (DIV), a co-operation organism between secretaries for urban policy
Inside the home secretary :  Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Sécurité et de la Justice ( High studies Institute for home safety and Justice)
Partnership structures at the regional level : Comité Départemental de Sécurité, Conseil Départemental de prévention de la délinquance, d’aide aux victimes et de lutte contre la drogue, les dérives sectaires et les violences faites aux femmes.
Partnership structures at the local level: CLSPD (Local Council for safety and delinquency prevention) / CLS (Local Safety Contracts)

5. Main Debates

Youth delinquency (penal responsibility, special centres for young delinquents), role of city mayors, specialised prevention (mediators, street educators), sharing of information between the justice, the police, violence against women, violence at school, suburbs safety, high numbers of custodies.