There are numerous urban myths about New Zealand being a 'safe place' with low crime rates the facts say otherwise.
New Zealand actually has the second highest rate for reported crimes and for crime victims in the developed world. Plus, the highest proportion of victims of property crimes, the second highest imprisonment rate in the western world and the third highest for amphetamine use. (details on our stats page) Those 'safe' claims wear a little thin after a while but don't just take our word for it
Low crime rate a 'myth'
Kevin Hicks, Chair of Neighbourhood Support Auckland City was quoted as having said:
"...the popular notion that we have a low rate of crime Is yet another myth that has been perpetuated over the years.We agree with him and we will continue to highlight how crime impacts migrants and visitors to New Zealand until things improve.
Another myth is that we are a punitive society. Quite the reverse is true – we are actually a very lenient society with the chance of imprisonment falling from one chance in 30 in before the 1950s, to less than one chance in 200 by the 1980s. “It is very disappointing to see the debate still based on urban legends ideologically driven “research” when the statistics that are easily found on the government website say the exact opposite”. “Over those same years when prosecutions and imprisonment was falling, crime was exponentially rising” he says.
Crime is now
· impacting nearly quarter of a million kiwis per annum (ed. the pop. is only 4 million)
· damaging our reputation worldwide
· causing governments to issue tourism warnings due to our high crime rate
· spawned several websites now actively discouraging migration and tourism to NZ
· Costing the country over $12 billion per annum
· Hurting the most vulnerable people
Kevin says it is time to be honest and admit there is a problem and actually formulate some long term plans to deal with it. "
These are some examples of attacks on tourists and visitors in New Zealand:
Two German tourists attacked in Paihia, Northland
Asian woman, (probably Japanese) age 22, raped in her room by 2 teenagers in a home invasion in Opotiki
Three Chinese tourists attacked and robbed at the foot of 90 Mile beach by two men they'd stopped to help
French tourist Anthony Cressend, beaten and robbed at campsite in Ahipara, Northland
Two Australian tourists robbed at knifepoint for their holiday money in Te Puke, SE of Tauranga.
Japanese tourist age 23 (female) kidnapped, robbed and assaulted in Rotorua by four men
French tourist (male) raped at gunpoint near Opotiki
American peace corp twins Adam and Alex Rahmlow, 21 were robbed of all their possessions by a man they tried to help in Amberley, Christchurch.
Dutch couple raped and robbed on a campsite in Tuatapere, NW of Invercargill, whilst on their honeymoon. (Dutch govt. issued a travel warning about NZ)
Two Koreans were attacked and robbed of their possession which included a laptop computer by a man claiming to be a gang member in Blenheim.
British tourist worker sexually assaulted near Hururu Falls, Northland when she was dragged off a walking track.
Canadian tourist Jeremie Kawerninski, kidnapped, assaulted and robbed in Lower Hutt, Wellington
Dutch couple robbed and sexually attacked Haruru Falls, Northland whilst on honeymoon.
Two British women robbed and raped in their campervan at Tokomaru Bay, north of Gisborne.
Japanese tourist subjected to a prolonged and brutal sex attack in a communal area of a backpacker's hostel in Turangi, Taupo.
Scottish woman Karen Aim brutally murdered by a youth in Taupo.
German woman Birgit Brauer murdered near New Plymouth.
Korean man Jae Hyeon Kim decapitated with a spade by white supremacist.
Japanese tourist robbed at gunpoint in Oamaru.
Irish cycle tourist Paul Mack bashed, robbed and urinated on throughout his NZ tour.
6 English and Danish tourists attacked and stabbed in Cashel Mall, Christchurch for having "foreign accents."
Irish man Robby O'Brien beaten up in Westport.
Russian couple Denis Khotchenko and Lera Nesterova beaten and robbed in Milford, Auckland
English woman knifed and sexually assaulted in a toilet block at an A1 motor camp in Kaikoura
American campers Patrick Dykstra and Kelsey McGinley beaten and robbed at Whangarei Falls.
Australian tourist sexually assaulted on a street in broad daylight in Nelson.
Australian tourist subjected to a sex attack by Maia Crawford Rongonui whilst walking home to a backpackers in Christchurch.
Canadian tourist left with a fractured skull outside Silver Fern backpackers in Taupo.
Dutch tourist beaten and robbed at Lake Rotorua.
British man Paul Speakman and his young son beaten and robbed in a campervan at Athenree Gorge, Katikati.
Chinese woman attacked for speaking Chinese on a train approaching Petone.
Scottish visitor Stuart Martin who was left in a coma and with a boot print on his face after a street bashing in Taradale, Christchurch.