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Violent crime rising in Switzerland

Violent crime has doubled in Switzerland in the past 15 years, according to an exhaustive new study, which found that foreigners are far more likely to be victims of crime than are native Swiss.

The results of the 15-year study, presented in Lausanne on Wednesday, showed that crime had risen by 200 per cent in Switzerland since the mid-1980s.

The most alarming finding was that violent crimes, including assault and muggings, had increased in almost every year of the study.

The results are based on five separate surveys of 4234 crime victims between 1984 and 1999. The organiser of the study, criminal law professor, Martin Killias, said the study had focused on "measuring crimes that affect people directly", rather than property alone.

The study found that foreigners were much more likely to become victims of crime than Swiss people. Foreigners accounted for around two-thirds of mugging victims, and up to half of all assault and rape victims.

The figures correspond with those held by police.

The study was conducted by the Institute for Criminality and Criminology at the University of Lausanne with funding from the federal government.

swissinfo with agencies

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