Gardaí identified a suspect in more than four out of five homicide cases last year, but were unable to detect an offender for the majority of sex offences.

Figures released by the Central Statistics Office show that gardaí failed to identify suspects in 90% of sexual offences reported last year.

However, the detection rate for sex offences carried out in 2019 has doubled, with suspects now identified in 20% of cases.

A crime is considered detected when gardaí have identified and sanctioned a suspected offender for the crime.

The data on rates of detection for crime incidents reported to An Garda Síochána in 2020 show that while most crimes are committed in Dublin, the rate for solving them is lower than outside the capital.

The CSO figures show that the highest detection rates were for dangerous or negligent acts with more than five of every six crimes solved.

Of the homicide offences committed in 2020, 82% had been solved by September 2021.

Sam Scriven, CSO statistician, said the rate of detection for many crimes reported last year increased in comparison to the crime solving rates in 2019 measured one year ago.

He said 38% of assaults and related offences were solved – an increase of 5%.

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There was a detection rate of 31% for robbery offences, up five percentage points, while solving burglary offences increased by 8% to 22%.

However, Mr Scriven said: "Users should note when considering crime trends the varying Covid-19 restrictions in place for much of 2020 and the likely impact of such restrictions on levels of crime".

Today's figures also include updated detection rates for crimes reported in 2019.

"The detection rate for sexual offences in 2019 has risen to one in five (20%) based on the latest available data, compared to just over one in ten (12%) when measured one year ago", Mr Scriven said.