Section 1 Characteristics of Heinous Offenses with Changing Nature and Background Factors Thereof
In this special article, we have examined recent trends and characteristics of heinous offenses, accordingto 5 key concepts, "changes in young offenders," "changes in offenders related to organized crime groups and foreign national offenders," "social background and its influence," "changes in regions where crimes arise," and "increasing damage to females, minors, and elderly people," while attempting overall analysis and examination from these perspectives. We have also focused on rapidly increasing robbery cases committed by juveniles and made detailed analysis on the problems of this issue, analyzed the actual conditions of serious cases of heinous offenses while providing specific examples, and overviewed the current situation of criminal punishments to and treatment of heinous offenders. In addition to the detailed descriptions of these analyses shown above, we will, in this chapter, point out characteristics of changes in the realty of robbery offenses, which are showing particularly remarkable changes. These changes are summarized into the following 5 points: (i) increase in street robbery cases committed by juveniles; (ii) increase in indoor robbery cases (those involving intrusion) committed by adults; (iii) increase in robbery cases committed by organized crime group members and those committed by visiting foreign nationals; (iv) signs of concentration to metropolitan areas and expansion to neighboring areas; (v) increase in the number of victims and the extent of damage. These changes and background factors thereof will be pointed out below in this order.