President Trump digs in on false claim that crime on rise in Germany

The president has doubled-down on the claim despite facts to the contrary.

June 19, 2018, 1:33 PM

President Trump is digging in on a demonstrably false claim that the crime rate in Germany has risen as a result of refugees in that country, despite the fact that the government of Germany recently released data showing the exact opposite -- that the crime rate has actually decreased in Germany to the lowest levels since 1992.

In a tweet Tuesday morning, the president accused the government of Germany of concealing the truth of the crime rate in the country since accepting a surge of migrants into the country in recent years.

But that's simply not true, according to the most recently released German government data that showed that the crime rate in 2017 dropped by 5.1 percent compared to the previous year, excluding immigration offenses like illegal border crossings. And if immigration-related offenses are included, the crime rate has decreased even more – by 9.6 percent.

The White House has yet to provide ABC News with the source of the information the president cited in claiming that there is a 10 percent-plus crime increase in Germany.

President Trump first made his claim that the crime rate in Germany is "way up" in Germany in a tweet on Monday and also asserted that migrants have "strongly and violently changed their culture" in Europe.

The president has made the claim as he defends his administration's new "zero tolerance" policy that calls for the criminal prosecution of all adults apprehended attempting to cross the U.S. border illegally. The policy has resulted in the separation of some 2,300 children from their parents over a 6-week period and has led to a political backlash across the political spectrum.

ABC News' Sarah Hucal contributed reporting.

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