The prosecution opened 918 rape cases in 2020 compared to 930 in 2019 • "Children were locked up at home - so we complained less"
2020: Fewer rape cases, more online offenses
In the Corona year, the number of cases opened by the State Attorney's Office concerning the commission of sexual offenses remained almost the same as in 2019. Data obtained by Israel Today show that in 2020 there was a minor decrease of less than 4% in the number of sexual offense cases handled by the State Attorney's Office.
However, the closures and prolonged stays in homes have resulted in an increase in the “act of sodomy” offense (an offense that includes touching the victim’s body, displaying sexual appearances and abusive speech).
In April last year, police reported a 17 percent drop in sexual offenses, largely due to a tens of percent drop in rape and sexual harassment cases.
This decrease was also reflected in the number of sexual offense cases handled by the State Attorney's Office.
Thus, in rape offenses, 918 cases were opened in 2020, compared to 930 cases in 2019. In the case of a prohibited husband, 45 cases were opened in 2020, compared to 48 cases in 2019. The offense of indecent act also decreased in the number of cases opened and stands at 622 in 2020, compared to 742 cases opened in 2019.
The only offense in which there was an increase in the number of cases opened in 2020 is an act of sodomy - from 319 cases in 2019 to 368 cases in 2020.
In contrast, and as already reported, when it comes to sexual offenses in cyberspace, there has been a dramatic and alarming increase in 2020.
Police data show that in 2020, 924 cases were opened concerning the commission of sexual offenses on the Internet, compared with only 587 cases opened in connection with sexual offenses on the Internet in 2019 - a figure that reflects a jump of about 57%.
"The standing of the data does not correspond with what we see in the field," says Yaakov Sela, a spokesman for the Magen organization that fights sexual assault, adding: "Unfortunately, we hear about more and more cases where, following the corona, the minor victim is not available to adults other than "The offender, therefore, cannot complain. I call on the educators to keep an eye on and contact the students even outside of school hours, so that the students can share them in case of sexual abuse or otherwise."
"The drastic increase in the number of sexual offenses in cyberspace should bother every parent," said Advocate Eyal Basarglik, who specializes in criminal law and white-collar offenses and accompanies victims of crime. And during the corona period when children are in front of the screens - all the more so.
Virtual space has also been breached, and children must be protected in any legal way. "