The term delinquency or delinquent behavior often refers to acts that are illegal, to differentiate delinquency, as a legal phenomenon, from antisocial behavior, which harms others or society but is not necessarily unlawful. In the present entry, the term delinquent behavior refers to both officially registered and unregistered delinquent behavior, as the behavior is the same and can be explained by the same factors. This entry focuses on delinquency from a life-course perspective. The risk and protective factors for development and persistence of delinquent behavior are explained, followed by suggestions for prevention programs and intervention to prevent and/or decrease delinquency.

Delinquency is a heavy burden for society and costs societies a lot of money. These costs concern the legal system, costs made for support and treatment ...

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