ABOUT THIS PUBLICATION
This publication presents nationally comparable statistics relating to the criminal jurisdiction of the Higher (Supreme and Intermediate), Magistrates' and Children's Courts across Australia for the period 1 July 2009 to 30 June 2010. Some time series data are also included where available. The statistics describe the characteristics of defendants, including information on the offences and sentences associated with those defendants.
Additional data are available in the Supplementary Data Cubes (cat. no. 4513.0) on the ABS website. A list of Supplementary Data Cubes is included in Appendix 1.
CHANGES IN THIS ISSUE
Prior to 2009-10, data for the New South Wales Magistrates' and Children's Courts were based on finalised appearances rather than finalised defendants. This counting method resulted in slightly higher population counts for these court levels in New South Wales than if the finalised defendant was counted. From August 2009, the New South Wales data conforms to the national counting unit of a finalised defendant (see Explanatory Notes paragraphs 13-14 and 63-64).
Data on defendants who identified as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander are presented for the first time in this issue. This information is available for defendants in each court level in Queensland and the Northern Territory; and for defendants in the Magistrates' and Children's Courts in New South Wales. For further information on the identification of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants see Explanatory Notes paragraphs 49-51.
The statistics are sourced from the national Criminal Courts collection conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), and have been compiled according to national standards in order to maximise consistency between the states and territories. The Explanatory Notes, Appendices and Glossary provide detailed information on the data sources, counting rules, terminology, classifications and other technical aspects associated with these statistics
Discrepancies may occur between sums of the component items and totals across tables due to rounding and randomisation.
INFORMATION ON ABS CRIME AND JUSTICE
More information about ABS activities in the field of crime and justice statistics is available from the 'Crime and Justice' theme page on the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. Details of other ABS publications relating to crime and justice statistics can be found in the Explanatory Notes paragraph 116.
The ABS acknowledges the valuable contribution of the National Criminal Courts Board of Management, the National Criminal Courts Statistics Advisory Group, the Court Practitioners' Group and the staff of the various agencies that provide the statistics presented in this publication.
For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Jo Dover on Melbourne (03) 9615 7681.