Criminal proceedings in Scotland 2016-17: statistics

Statistics on criminal proceedings concluded in Scottish courts and alternatives to prosecution, issued by the police and by the Crown Office.

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5. People convicted by crime/ offence

( Tables 4a and 4b)

This publication divides violations of criminal law into (a) crimes and (b) offences. This distinction is made only for statistical reporting purposes. Although the violations allocated under "crimes" tend to be more serious there are some "offences" that have more severe punishments associated with them e.g. drink driving is classified under "offences" under "motor vehicle offences" rather than under "crimes". See Annex D for a full listing of the classification.

A total of 92,334 people had a charge proved in 2016-17, a decline of eight per cent on levels in 2015-16 (99,962). In 2016-17 "crimes" made up 32,540 of the total number of convictions (35%) while "offences" stood at 59,794 (65%). The rate of decline was higher for crimes in the year to 2016-17 (down nine per cent) than for offences (down seven per cent). The largest components of these decreases are in convictions related to 'other crimes', including 'crimes against public justice' and 'drugs'; and there are continuing falls in motoring offences convictions, especially in speeding.


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