Gun crime down 30 percent, MOI says

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA

Mon, Oct 29, 2007 - Page 3

The number of gun crimes handled by law enforcement agencies around the country totaled 331 in the first nine months of this year, down by 30 percent, or 135 cases, from the year before, Ministry of the Interior officials said yesterday.

Most of the cases involved robbery, homicide, extortion, kidnapping, offenses against personal liberty and rape or assault and battery, in that order, ministry officials said.

Of the total, 281 were solved with the arrests of the perpetrators, marking a success rate of 85 percent -- a figure that is 14 percent higher than the same period last year, the officials noted.

One hundred and fifty cases, or 45 percent, involved robbery and 114 involved homicide, they added.

Taipei County had the largest number of crimes involving fire-arms in the January to September period, with 73 cases, followed by Taoyuan County, with 35 cases and Pingtung County, with 22 cases. Taipei and Kaohsiung cities each had 18 cases.

Police statistics show that most of the weapons and ammunition seized during crackdowns were from Taipei City and Taichung City. A total of 1,850 guns of various types were seized in the January to September period, down roughly 20 percent year-on-year. Locally made or modified guns made up the bulk of those confiscated, the statistics show.