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The explanations to date of the remarkable decrease in crime that has been reported over the last two decades in a number of western countries have been less than convincing. In light of these limitations this article explores the impact that the recent increase of immigration into the uk may have had on recorded crime levels. Drawing on a range of international research the paper includes some empirical evidence from England and Wales that suggests that in contrast to the popular opinion that increased immigration is associated with an increase in crime, that not only are the recent waves of immigration not linked to rising crime, but also our findings lend qualified support to the contention that recent waves of immigration have contributed to the crime drop that has taken place in the uk and other countries over the last two decades.

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Figures

  • Changing Levels of Crime and Immigration in England and Wales 1990–2010, indexed to 100.

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  • Immigration and Violent Crime in Ten Cities in England and Wales, 2001–2011.

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  • asb rates within areas with predominant immigrant type for 2011.

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  • Arrest rates in London by country of birth for 2011.

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