Youth crime drops in Russia since beginning of 2003

Approximately 430 thousand homeless children and juvenile criminals have been detained by the police since the beginning of 2003, said Deputy Director of the Ministry of Internal Affair's Public Safety Service Nikolai Pershutkin. He said that more than 350 thousand teenagers were handed over to their parents, 10 thousand were sent to temporary juvenile detention centers and 29 thousand were enrolled in different social institutions including 8 thousand who were enrolled in orphanages and boarding schools.

Pershutkin said that since the beginning of 2003 almost 94 thousand crimes have been reported and in connection with 95 thousand teenagers have been detained. 'This is 6% less than for the same period in 2002,' said Pershutkin. He said that approximately 47.5 thousand crimes were committed by students. Moreover, the number of heinous and particularly heinous crimes like murder and robbery committed by minors decreased by 4.5% compared to the same period in 2002 to 7.5 thousand.

He also said that the number of minors detained for repeated crimes decreased by 16% compared to the same period in 2002. Moreover, there were fewer crimes committed by teenagers under the influence of alcohol. 'First and foremost, (these decreases) are due to preventive measures instituted by police and aimed at youth. Inspectors who work with minors regularly organize meetings in schools and other youth institutions with specialists who speak to teenagers about the consequences of using drugs and alcohol,' he said.

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