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Eight out of ten prisoners in Switzerland have foreign background

The number and proportion of inmates with a foreign background in Swiss prisons have increased sharply in recent years. New figures show that as many as 80 percent of all prisoners in the country are foreigners.

Last week Switzerland published official statistics showing that the number of prisoners in the Alpine state has increased by 50 percent between 1988 and 2017, Radio Télévision Suisse reports.
Between 1988 and 2017, an average of 24 percent of prisoners were Swiss citizens, 31 percent were migrants who had settled in the country and 45 percent were foreigners without connection to Switzerland.
The new statistics show that between 2007 and 2017, the proportion of Swiss citizen inmates is 20 percent, 28 percent are migrants who have settled in the country and the remaining 52 percent are foreigners who are unrelated to the country.
While other European countries find it difficult to carry out expulsions, Switzerland has shown that it is possible. During 2017, more than 1,000 criminal migrants were expelled to their home countries.
In several European countries, it is noted that migrants are over-represented in crime. In Germany, it was noted in 2017 that almost half of all suspects of crimes in the capital had foreign background.
In the table below, Berliner Morgenpost compiled a number of official crime statistics from 2016 in Berlin concerning, among other things, thefts and drug trafficking, for which foreigners are over-represented as suspects of the crimes.
Pickpocketing – 90.7%
Heroin dealing – 84.9%
Car theft – 79.60%
Other vehicle theft – 73.10%
Cannabis dealing – 62.5%
Fraud – 58.90%
Counterfeiting – 58.30%
Money laundering – 54.90%
Shoplifting – 54.30%
Handling of stolen goods – 53.90%
Domestic burglary – 52.2%
In Austria, migrants are highly over-represented in crime statistics as well. Last year, Austrian Kronen Zeitung highlighted figures from 2018 showing that in the capital city of Vienna more than half of all criminal suspects had a foreign background.
Earlier we published the German numbers, that show the same trend.

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