Situation of Increasing Juvenile Crime in Vietnam

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Daily, hourly, there are hundreds of stories proving an increase in youth crime rates. ‘Younger and Twice as violent’ is the story which points to the outbreak of youth crime. Not only developed countries but also developing countries, including Viet Nam, “juvenile crime” is one of the most serious issues and should be concerned in society. What actually is a juvenile crime? According to an article, ‘juvenile crime’ is a term denoting various offences committed by children or youths under the age of 18. Much research as well as surveys have shown that this situation has been getting worse and worse in the recently years. Therefore, in the scope of this paper, three main points will be mentioned. The first part discusses the alarming situation in juvenile crime. The second part deals with analysing the causes and the last part proposes some solutions to lessen the dangerous incidence of juvenile offenders to society.

Discussion of Findings

Statistics of Juvenile Crime in Viet Nam

An alarming number of young criminals are always increasing dramatically. Looking back at the previous time, in his study, Chu Thanh Quang has statistical data as follows:

  • In 2004 there were 2.540 juvenile offenders
  • In 2005 there were 5.305 juvenile offenders (twice as many as 2004)
  • In the first nine months of 2006 there were 4.438 juvenile offenders

The next, based on the statistics of the Ministry of Public Security and the Supreme People's Procuracy, Trinh Thi Kim Ngoc with her research “ Increasing juvenile crime – a warning for sustainable social development in Viet Nam”, shows the number of offenses nationwide is growing year by year. And recently, according to data from the Steering Committee of Project IV'Struggle against crimes against children and criminals in adolescence', from 2007 to 6/2013, the whole country includes over 94.300 children violating the crime law. The number of crime cases increased by 4.300, equal to 6.72% compared to 6.5 years ago (Hoang Lam, 2014). Beside that, the statistics of the Public Administration Police (C64) - Ministry of Public Security show that over 17.000 law violations have been committed nationwide by more than 25.000 children and juveniles (Chau Anh, 2017).

The Most of the acts of robbery, intentional injury, public disorder, theft of property.... Police agencies have handled 5.667 criminal cases with more than 8.300 subjects. Notably, under 14 years of age accounted for nearly 20%. More dangerous, according to C64, now in big cities such as Hanoi, HCMC. Ho Chi Minh City has launched the phenomenon of child prostitution from 12 to 17 years old. Thus, from the above situation, we have seen the terrible level of crime committed by the youth department today. What causes this increasingly rejuvenating crime? Let's discuss some of the main reasons.

The Reasons of Increasing Juvenile Crime in Viet Nam

There are many theorries to explain the causes of crime, in there, Differential Association Theory of Ewind H.Sutherland – one of the country’s leading criminologists cited that ‘Criminal behavior is learned in interaction with other persons in a process of communication’. It means juvenile is often affected by the living enviroment. This is also mentioned in Introductory of Criminology (Duong,2009)

First of all, family is the most fundamental cause of juvenile crime. ‘Children do not naturally become criminals’ - it's a statement that many people agree. For youngsters, the family is representing the vast world around. The perception of the world, of society and of oneself will be directly influenced by the care, nurture, attitudes, behavior of their parents. Therefore, parents don’t have the right parenting way can lead to juvenile delinquency. For example, unsupervised children will have psychological distortions and will easily commit crimes when they are dragged. The Supreme People's Procuratorate's statistics show that 71% of adolescents are delinquent due to inadequate care (2008, Th.S Đặng Thanh Nga, Institute of Psychology). Or the pampering, satisfying the needs of the children of parents will create a habit of asking for anything. At some point, when the family does not satisfy the claims or does not have the conditions to serve, they become discontented and lead to criminal acts. Specially, after the investigation we also found that most juvenile delinquents are the result of wrong actions from parents.

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According to criminology statistics, illegally-exploited children from illegal family backgrounds make up 51.94%, families of criminals account for 40%, 30% of offenders are parents, or both and nearly 50% of children commit crimes because of their harsh treatment. Thus, a healthy family environment will be the decisive factor for the formation and development of personality.

Second, the rapid change of society is also the reason of increasing crime in teenagers. An undeniable fact is the explosion of information technology. Many truant students play electronic games. This is the cause of the lack of money children play computer games formed groups robbed children to rob robbery together. In particular, unhealthy games, bloody violence, agitation, psychological instability for young people.

Last but not least, it is psychology in mature stage. Most adolescents often express themselves by actions such as: bushwalking, smoking…According to the analysis of the Criminal Investigation Police Department, a significant proportion of today's students have mistakenly perceived the use of violence in school as a means of 'expressing themselves' Statistics from the Hanoi Department of Education and Training show that in 2009-2010 school year there were nearly 100 students in school violence.

Some Solutions to Reduce Juvenile Crime in Viet Nam

‘We can’t always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future’- Franklin D. Roosevelt

That means, now we're care you for children. Facing the current juvenile delinquency, we need find out other methods about how to prevent this. And as the cause of crime, we must start from the management of family, school and society. First, as mentioned above, the family is the best educational setting to help children progress and parents - the first 'teacher' to start the formation and development in the child personality in accordance with the requirements of society. Therefore, they must be exemplary in everyday life. They should care about the children properly and have a coordinated education of their children in a consistent way. Specially, both father and mother need to keep up to date on their knowledge of law and psychological understanding of juveniles.

Families should have a way of life in accordance with social norms, thereby explaining the law, values of traditional culture and ethics of the people. Beside, schools should enhance the monitoring and supervision of student activities during school hours, extracurricular activities and at dormitories and boarding houses where students live. The school is closely linked with the family to timely inform the results of learning, moral training as well as the deviation in thinking, the way of life of students to coordinate education to prevent children from becoming involved in negative behaviors. Finally, social responsibility, Hilary (2009) inferred that if reducing unemployment, the crime rate can decrease to 25%. Hence, governments should have vocational training programs to create jobs for young workers. The government should also have development investment policies for remote and border areas.

According to the Ministry of Public Security's IPC, the mass organizations should promote the propaganda and education, improve the law awareness among the people, implement programs to improve the effectiveness of crime prevention and social evils, promote the masses to participate in the prevention and combat of crimes, social evils, the protection of the Fatherland's security, such as the model of 'People's Patrol', 'Social security group', 'Residential security in security and order'. Futhermore, in the speech ‘Buddhist Crime Prevention Solution on the National Assembly’ (2011), Thich Bao Nghiem suggested we should promote lectures on Buddhism, on causes and effects to various objects, thereby helping people grow intellectually, properly aware of their behaviors. Since then, they are afraid, don’t dare to do bad things but actively do good ones. Others suggested tightening the law, raising criminal sentences for juvenile criminals.


The above article analyzes the situation of juvenile delinquency in Vietnam, giving reasons as well as solutions to the problem. Undoubtedly, the crime situation in Vietnam is increasing and more dangerous. Crime prevention is a long process in which families, schools and societies play a vital role in educating children - the preschool of the country, away from the path of sin.

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