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In 2007-08, there were a total of 675,765 finalised defendants in Australia's criminal courts: 16,811 in the Higher Courts; 619,542 in the Magistrates' Courts; and 39,412 in the Children's Courts. Between 2006-07 and 2007-08, the number of defendants finalised across all criminal courts increased by 5%.
In 2007-08, male defendants increased by 5% (from 497,990 in 2006-07 to 521,404) and female defendants increased by 9% (from 132,278 in 2006-07 to 143,862). The number of organisations appearing as defendants before the courts decreased 15% over this same period (from 7,971 in 2006-07 to 6,819 in 2007-08).
Across all court levels, 96% of defendants adjudicated were proven guilty (up from 95% in 2006-07). Of those proven guilty, 10% (59,276) were sentenced to a custodial order.
In the Higher Courts:
In the Children's Courts:
About this release
The Criminal Courts, Australia, 2007-08 (cat. no. 4513.0) publication presents nationally comparable statistics relating to the criminal jurisdiction of the Higher (Supreme and Intermediate), Magistrates' and Children's Courts across Australia. It provides data showing the number of defendants dealt with by the courts and includes details on the characteristics of defendants (such as age and sex), and outcomes (including sentence type) by the type of principal offence committed. Information is presented for each state and territory (including the aggregate total for Australia) and for each of the three court levels. The statistics presented are based on data extracted from administrative records held by state and territory agencies responsible for courts administration.
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