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‘Bounced cheques’ remain most common crime in Oman

31 Jan 2022 bounced cheques By SHADDAD AL MUSALMY

Muscat – Bounced cheques continue to top the list of most common crimes committed, followed by those related to IT and electronic transactions, with over 7,000 cases of bounced cheques recorded in Oman in 2021.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, Dr Ahmed bin Said al Shukaili, assistant public prosecutor, who is also spokesman for the Public Prosecution, said, “The most frequent crimes in 2021 were cheques issued without balance to cover them, which amounted to 7,143 cases, followed by crimes of information technology and electronic transactions with 2,894 cases.”

“The total index of cases dealt with by the Public Prosecution increased last year to 28,201 cases. The number of criminal cases increased by 73 cases, at a rate of 6.2 per cent, compared to 2020. A total of 1,255 cases were registered in 2021, while in 2020, the number reached 1,182,” he added.

He further disclosed, that the registration of information technology crimes and electronic transactions was also among the top 10 cases during the past year in Oman, which constitutes an alarm bell for concerted efforts by all to reduce it.

“Around 111 cases related to the use of social media were registered, of which, 55 cases were referred to the courts,” Dr Shukaili said.

Among the other most commonly reported crimes in 2021 were drug trafficking and child molestation. In general, the number of accused persons in 2021 was 34,873, while 10,350 criminal judgments were enforced. The funds collected in 2021, by way of fines in this regard, amounted to RO20,258,127.

According to the Public Prosecution, most of the perpetrators of cyber crime are from outside Oman, and several international and bilateral agreements helped to pursue them. Also, 1,470 cases related to insulting people using technology, 322 related to assaulting the sanctity of private life, 270 related to threatening people, and 29 related to extortion.

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