FRAUD and serious assaults in Cork have soared in the second quarter of this year.
Statistics published yesterday by the Central Statistics Office show that there were 146 fraud incidents in Cork city and county from March to June. This was up from 117 in the same period last year.
The number of assaults causing harm rose from 94 to 101 in the same period.
Theft incidents have also increased in Cork city and county, from 1,268 to 1,337 in the same quarter.
The fraud figures are echoed on a national level, with incidents rising by more than a third.
The Minister for Justice, Charlie Flanagan, said: "A range of measures are being taken to prevent and combat fraud, including insurance fraud. Gardaí are taking steps to ensure consistency in how reports of potential fraud are received, recorded and disseminated for investigation. Changes have also been made to the Pulse system to improve the quality and consistency of recording of insurance related crime.” Drug offences were down in Cork city, with a reduction in drug dealing detections from 46 to 42, and in personal use detections from 205 to 198.
However, there was an increase of 16.5% in drug offences nationally.
Minister Flanagan said: "The upward trend in recorded incidents of controlled drug offences remains a cause for concern. The Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau leads in tackling all forms of drug trafficking and the supply of illicit drugs in Ireland.
Collaboration at an inter-agency and international level remain key in tackling this issue. For example, in a joint operation earlier this month involving members of The Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau and the United Kingdom National Crime Agency, a number of searches were carried in Dublin and Meath resulting in a seizure of heroin with an estimate value of €1 million."