The crime rate in Japan


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    Japan is a nation where you’ll see practices that are usually acknowledged to be unwise in many other countries, such as individuals napping in railways with personal possessions on display.

    When compared to many developed nations, Japan is known for having an extremely low crime rate.

    Despite the fact that Japan has a population of 127 million citizens, violent crime is practically unheard of, and illegal drug consumption is low in comparison to other developed nations, according to Japanese crime rate statistics.

    Even though Japan is regarded as a “safe and reliable state,” instances have occurred that have caused some to doubt its safety. 

    Many foreigners interested in visiting Japan wonder, “What is the crime rate in Japan?” To genuinely determine for certain if Japan is just as safe as it appears, we try to evaluate the crime rate in Japan with that of other nations. 

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    Does Japan have a high crime rate?

    In contrast to numerous different nations, the crime rate in Japan is normally close to zero, varying from close to zero to modestly low figures throughout its prefectures. Murders in Japan were among the lowest in the globe as of 2015.


    Also, according to UNODC facts and figures from 2016, Japan has the lowest per capita homicide rate of 0.3 per 100 000 population.

    Is Japan safer than the UK?

    Japan is consistently ranked as one of the safest nations on earth. If the crime rates in Japan vs the UK are compared, the data shows that Japan is safer than the United Kingdom.

    Murder, burglary, armed robberies, sex crimes, and vehicle theft are all more common in the United Kingdom than they are in Japan. 

    Is Japan dangerous at night?

    If you’re a guy, you’ll be safe practically all around Japan, albeit there’s a chance you’ll get run over by a vehicle or slip into a drain or canal thanks to terrible roadway illumination, lack of protection railings, and lack of footpath.

    This can become a little less so for women, especially at nighttime or in isolated or lonely areas, however, the frequency of incidences is still minimal in comparison to most nations.

    Female attacks that occur in Japan as well as elsewhere, usually take place in quiet or isolated areas ( like restrooms).

    Overall Crime and Safety Situation.

    The crime rate in Japan is often lower than the global average throughout the United States. Tokyo and Fukuoka were named the world’s most liveable metropolis in 2019 by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

    Overall Crime and Safety Situation

    In overcrowded commercial districts, pubs and bars, and mass transit terminals, pickpocketing as well as other minor crimes often occur. Nonetheless, during the previous years, accusations of similar offenses targeting foreigners, vacationers, and international travelers have decreased significantly.

    Most of Japan’s after-hours liquor bar areas have illegal substances sale and brothels, however, these operations are mostly inconspicuous and therefore are regarded as victimless offenses by natives. 

    In Japan, cybercrime is becoming a widespread problem. Incidence of violent crime in Japan is pretty uncommon. 

    Police Response.

    The Japanese police department has a great deal of citizen trust and therefore can count on widespread support in their efforts.

    While police officers are well-trained, they typically lack real-life crime experience beyond issuing citations and responding to domestic disturbances.

    Japanese policemen, who like to depend on excellent martial arts moves – including futon rolling – instead of employing firearms, are one of the major factors that contribute to low rates of gun crime.

    Instead of reaching for a firearm, typically Japanese cops will acquire large futons and roll up any individual that is being rowdy or intoxicated into small burritos, which they will then transport down to the police station to keep them under control.

    Police officers in Japan believe that aggression should never be met with aggression. 

    Terrorism Threat.

    The Islamic State’s quick and deadly rise from both the chaos of Syria and Iraq, along with a series of “freedom fighter” assaults, has re-emphasized the risk of terrorism.

    Just after Shinzo Abe Abe’s imprudent involvement in Middle East politics, the deaths of Haruna Yukawa and Kenji Goto have further heightened worries in Japan.

    Abe countered by declaring that “he would not bow into the terrorism” and vowed to “start making those attackers pay the ultimate price,” using rhetoric that has become standard for leaders after 9/11.

    Medical Emergencies.

    In Japan, you could call the emergency services, the security services, or the fire department in emergency situations.

    It can save your life in these situations if you can speak correctly with the aid hotline.

    Though the possibilities of being linked to English-speaking employees are not always high, all those who don’t speak Japanese can nevertheless address the bulk of problems.

    It is critical, nevertheless, to be articulate while discussing the problem as well as to be able to provide the operator with comprehensive details regarding your whereabouts as well as how to locate you.

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    Political, Economic, Religious, and Ethnic Violence.

    In Japan, mass riots and incidents of civil disorder are exceptionally rare. The majority of demonstrations are nonviolent and necessitate a government petition as well as an official authorization.

    Certain sorts of disorderly behavior seem to be tolerated by the government and the people as part of a healthy democratic government. The majority of demonstrations adhere to a set of rules. The people will be given legal permissions and must adhere to the paths and regions that have been granted to them.

    Opinions are expressed through banners and placards. Occasionally, movement is obstructed, and authorities and demonstrators engage in physical confrontations. Arrests, on the other hand, are uncommon and usually reserved for violent incidents.

    Transportation-Safety Situation.

    Except for highways, picturesque driving lanes, and a few toll bridges, most roadways in Japan are toll-free. The roads are generally in excellent shape, while city residential streets might be small or even inaccessible to bigger cars.

    All across metropolitan areas, traffic jams are a common issue. Conversely, a few popular hazards on Japanese roadways tend to involve motorists driving recklessly through crosswalks long after the traffic signal has changed to red, individuals parking their automobiles at the roadside in a fashion that blocks freeways, and incautious bike riders, particularly those who ride mostly on the opposite side of the street.

    Post-specific Concerns.

    Because of the huge amount of garbage in contemporary Japanese society, one of its most pressing challenges is waste disposal.

    Because of Japan’s limited size, there’s not enough space to handle all this garbage.

    Formerly, Japanese governmental institutions routinely burn large amounts of garbage; however, the authorities were obliged to institute a strict recycling system due to air contamination concerns.  

    Coping with the repercussions of the Fukushima Nuclear plant incident seems to be a secondary significant natural challenge in Japanese history.

    And in the latter half of the twentieth century, Japan has suffered from severe air pollution; nevertheless, vigorous policy changes have resulted in Japanese cities being certified as having some of the healthiest urban air in the globe by the World Health Organization (WHO). 

    Crime States in Japan.

    Crime States in Japan


    Osaka is the capital of the prefecture of Osaka. It is also the most populous district in the Keihanshin Metropolitan Area. Living in Osaka carries a low level of danger.

    With a population of 8,856,530 people and a crime rate of 1659.4 per 100,000 per capita, the city has one of the highest crime rates in Japan. 


    Fukuoka is the island’s most populated city and the biggest city and metropolitan region southwest of the Keihanshin.

    It has a population of around five million people and a 1424.4 per 100,000 capita crime rate. Similar to Osaka, car theft is greater than average in comparison to other Japanese cities. 


    Aichi Prefecture is situated in the Chubu Region. Nagoya, the prefectural capital and Japan’s fourth-biggest metropolis, is the major city in the region. It has a population of 7.4 million people and a crime rate of 1415.9 individuals per 100,000. 


    Hyogo Prefecture is a Japanese municipality in Honshu’s Kansai region. With a population of 5.5 million people, Hyogo Prefecture has a crime rate of 1358.4 per 100,000 per capita.

    The table below contains a complete breakdown of the crime rate in the four Japanese states/prefectures mentioned above. 

    States/PrefecturesMedian PopulationAverage Reported crimeAverage Arrested casesCrime rate per 100,000 per capita
    Fukuoka 5,071,62334,5208,4761424.4
    Aichi 7,414,86349,95610,2761415.9
    Hyogo 5,568,40640,3959,3551358.4

    Number of Arrests and proportion of senior offenders. 

    Since a couple of decades ago, the proportion of convicts aged 60 and over increased by 7% to 9,308, accounting for 19% of Japan’s total inmate population in 2016.

    In the United States, approximately 6% of people in that age group are employed, while in South Korea, roughly 11% are employed. More than half of all crimes perpetrated by seniors (52.4%) were shoplifting.

    Thefts (17.6%), attacks (14.2%), and frauds (14.2%) were also common crimes among this age group (5.4 percent ). Shoplifting accounted for 28.7% of all thefts across all age groups, while other thefts accounted for 20.1%, indicating that elderly criminals commit the majority of thefts.

    Senior women perpetrated the most shoplifting infractions, accounting for 75.6 % of all thefts. 

    Is Japan safer than the USA?

    When contrasting the crime rates in Japan vs the US, every indicator that is relevant is taken into consideration. In comparison to the United States, Japan is a safer country.

    Is Japan safer than the USA

    There is almost no gang violence or murders in Japan, and there is almost no gun violence (due to the fact that only police officers are permitted to own firearms), and the Japanese are widely considered to be among the most law-abiding people on the planet.

    If you ever get hospitalized in Japan, you’re considerably more likely to have better outcomes from your medication – and even to be able to seek therapy at all. Also when contrasting the japan crime rate vs Canada, Japan still seems to be safer. 

    What is the most dangerous city in Japan?

    The city of Osaka is the most dangerous in Japan. Osaka, as a municipality and a prefecture, has the highest crime rate in Japan (even higher than Tokyo’s crime rate), with far more rapes and murders than any city.

    Though this may startle tourists, it does not shock natives who are all wary of Nishinari-Ku, Osaka’s oldest dangerous area, that serves as a sanctuary for outlaws, a rendezvous for the Yakuza (a Japanese Crime syndicate), and residence to Japan’s biggest Red Light District (Tobita).

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    Crime rate in Japan vs USA

    The rate of crime in Japan is incredibly low. Its deliberate murder rate in 2011 is 0.3 per 100 000 population, compared to 4.7 per 100,000 throughout the United States.

    Given the recent major shootings in the United States, Japan’s gun death figures are very noteworthy. In 2013, the gun murder rate in Japan was 0.01 per 100 000 population, whereas the rate in The united states is 3.5, 350 times greater.

    Despite having a population one-third that of the United States, Japan has the lowest gun crime rate throughout the industrialized world, with a rate of 0.6 relative to 10.5 in the US.

    Comparison of crime rate in Japan vs US. 

    The table below entailed the statistical comparison of the fact and figures of crime rate in Japan vs the US. 

    Crime IndexJapanUS
    Level of crime. 18.9353.62
    Ethnic/Racial attacks23.3430.81
    Robbery 19.6948.58
    Car Theft19.4254.30
    Drug Crime22.1960.53
    Property crime22.2056.56
    Corruption 28.1242.40

    The crime rate in Japan FAQs

    How bad is crime in Japan?

    The crime rate in Japan is often lower than the national average in the United States. According to recent figures, there are three robberies per 100,000 people on average.

    Why is Japan’s crime rate so low?

    Japan’s judicial system is extremely functional and helps to keep crime rates minimal. According to Japanese policemen, they solve 98 percent of murder cases and prosecute over 99 percent of all perpetrators taken to trial.

    Japan has extraordinarily low poverty rates, joblessness, and drug abuse in comparison to the rest of the globe. All of these socioeconomic variables come together to make Japan one of the world’s safest nations.

    How safe is it in Japan?

    In general, travelers visiting Japan are safe. Although the crime rate is low, petty theft may occur at popular tourist spots.

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