Recorded crimes have dropped by 8pc, or more than 20,000 offences, according to the latest figures published today by the Central Statistics Office.
The figures show that crime has again dropped in 12 out of 14 categories, including burglaries where the fall over the year up to the end of June was estimated at almost 9pc.
Significant decreases were also revealed for weapons and explosive offences (down 13.9pc), drug crime (12.6pc), threats to murder, assaults and harassments (10pc), fraud and deception (10pc), and sexual offences (7.9pc).
However, the overall figure for theft has increased by 0.8pc, up by 628 offences to a total of 77,022, and this is being fuelled by a massive 33pc rise in theft from the person.
Welcoming the overall figures, Justice Minister Alan Shatter said the rise of theft from the person, which included what he described as the phenomenon of mobile phone theft, was a specific area of concern.
He said this was being tackled by a number of targeted garda operatons and specific crime prevention advice on keeping phones and other valuable items secure.
Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan said the intensive work carried out by his force over the past year was having a very real and tangible effect on the quality of life in communities around the country.
Figures for Operation Fiacla, the nationwide drive against burglars, showed that up to the end of last month, a total of 6,329 people had been arrested and 3,541 suspects charged with burglary offences.
Murders were down by one and manslaughter by two but there was an increase of four in the number of dangerous driving incidents causing death, twenty compared with sixteen.
The commissioner stressed that targeted intelligence led operations were crucial in effectively disrupting subversive and criminal gangs and he said he could never over-emphasise the importance of the partnership between the gardai and the community in continuing to prevent and detect crime.