Hate crime data 2017 (Latvia), 2018


Latvia regularly reports hate crime data to ODIHR. Latvia’s criminal code contains a general penalty enhancement. Data reported to ODIHR also include offences of incitement to hatred. Data are collected by the Ministry of Interior, law enforcement agencies, the Department of Analysis and Management of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Courts Administration unit of the Ministry of Justice and the Security Police of the Republic of Latvia. Data are not made publicly available.

How hate crime data is collected
There is no specific system for police to record hate crimes, so they are registered in the same way as any other offence.

While the Prosecution Office captures hate speech cases separately (these are crimes falling under Section 78 of the Criminal Law Triggering of National, Ethnic and Racial Hatred), no statistical information is compiled on hate crimes, which are defined as crimes committed due to racist, national, ethnic or religious motives in Section 48(1)14 of the Criminal Law.

The Court Administration compiles judicial crime statistics according to the relevant criminal law section. Data on hate crimes cannot be captured separately because Latvia’s hate crime provision is not a substantive offence but a sentencing provision.


Official data

YearHate crimes recorded by policeProsecutedSentencedAbout these data
2017Not availableNot availableNot available
20161170Reported police and prosecution figures consist of incitement of hatred cases. Three of the cases recorde by police may have involved violence or threats
20151115Reported police and prosecution figures consist of incitement of hatred cases, some of which may have involved violence or threats
20141379Reported police and prosecution figures consist of incitement of hatred cases, some of which may have involved violence or threats
2013220Not availablePolice data include incitement to hatred offences. Only prosecution data relating to incitement to hatred were received

Incidents reported by other sources

Total 2 incidents

Racism and xenophobiaBias against Christians
Threats: 1 Total: 1Attacks against property: 1 Total: 1

Racism and xenophobia

DateType of incidentSourceDescription
2017-02ThreatsUNHCRMigrants were threatened via social media.

Bias against Christians

DateType of incidentSourceDescription
2017-04Attacks against propertyJehovah’s WitnessesA Kingdom Hall was targeted in an arson attack in which three petrol bombs were thrown against the building.

International reports

Racism and xenophobia

In its “Concluding observations on the combined sixth to twelfth periodic reports of Latvia”, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) recommended that the Latvian authorities prioritize the collection of reliable and comprehensive statistics disaggregated by the ethnicity of the victims, reports, investigations, prosecutions, convictions and sanctions for racist hate crimes. CERD also recommended that the authorities develop training programmes on suitable methods for identifying, registering, investigating and prosecuting racist incidents and hate crimes.

Key observation

ODIHR observes that Latvia has not reported on hate crimes separately from cases of hate speech.

Document data: published 16.11.2018. Link: http://hatecrime.osce.org/latvia?year=2017

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