The legacy of INTERPOL crime data to cross-national criminology

Authored by: Rosemary Barberet

Routledge Handbook of International Criminology

Print publication date:  April  2011
Online publication date:  May  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415779098
eBook ISBN: 9780203864708
Adobe ISBN: 9781135193850


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Crime data from INTERPOL are the oldest dataset of cross-national indicators of crime maintained by an international organization. Created in 1923, the International Criminal Police Commission (ICPC, later abbreviated to ICPC-INTERPOL and now known as INTERPOL) was founded to facilitate police cooperation among countries, even where diplomatic ties do not exist. INTERPOL’s International Crime Statistics were first published in 1950. In 2006, INTERPOL decided to cease collecting and disseminating crime data, and 2005 was the last year data were collected, covering 2004. INTERPOL Resolution AG-2006-RES-19 noted problems with the accuracy and reliability of INTERPOL’s statistics; that the agency was not equipped to improve the quality of its statistics; that the number of members and National Central Bureaus who contributed statistics was insufficient; that, consequently, the statistics were not useful for international police cooperation; and, that “the publication of the statistics is likely to create difficulties in the way they are used.”

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