Delinquent (Latin delinquere "to pass away , making a misstep") is a particularly in criminology used term for a criminal or delinquent person. The word identifies a person as the perpetrator of a criminally prosecutable offense in the broadest sense, depending on the context, perpetrators of an administrative offense - in Germany not a criminal offense in the true sense of the word - or other persons who have become suspicious of criminal law in any way (from warned dodgers to convicted felons) can also be used ) be included. The designation usually emphasizes sociological rather than legal aspects of crime (see delinquency ).
The expression is found particularly frequently in the context of juvenile delinquency and has also found its way into administrative language here; For example, arrested minors are also referred to as "delinquents" in official jargon. Since, in particular of criminal responsibility children who commit a criminally relevant misconduct, can not be described in the full sense as "offenders", this word alternative offers. In addition, this use of language is also intended to prevent the stigmatization and criminalization of those affected.
In common parlance, delinquent stands for a wrongdoer , lawbreaker, norm violator or rule violator. The term may also be used as a euphemism or " politically correct " alternative to avoid negative synonyms such as criminal or criminal if they are perceived as discriminatory or too much derogatory.