The Agence France-Presse, citing an article published yesterday in a state-run Chinese newspaper, reports that the crime rate among juveniles in China has more than doubled in the past decade.
“Offenders’ average ages have become younger, and they are committing new types of crime and forming larger gangs,” said Liu Guiming, deputy secretary general of the Chinese Society of Juvenile Delinquency, according to the newspaper China Daily.
The types of crimes committed by juveniles — defined in China as 14 to 18 years old — ranged from robbery to rape, the paper said. It said that 33,000 young people committed crimes in 1998, and that the number had risen at a rate that suggested 80,000 would commit crimes this year.
Broken homes seemed to be the main factor behind the growth in delinquency, the newspaper said, quoting a Beijing court, which said that 59 percent of juvenile offenders came from broken families and had often experienced domestic violence.