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Tasmania reported the highest female youth offender rate at 3,333 female offenders per 100,000 females aged 10 to 19 years, followed by the Northern Territory with a rate of 2,827 female offenders per 100,000 females aged 10 to 19 years. The lowest youth offender rates for both males and females were reported in Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory, however Victoria's rates are understated. For all states and territories, the male youth offender rate was well above the rate for females.
Consistent with the overall offender population, there was variability across the jurisdictions in relation to which principal offences were the most prevalent for youth offenders, as well as variability in the youth offender rates for those principal offences. The predominant principal offences that offenders aged 10 to 19 years were proceeded against in 2008-09, as measured by the offender rates per 100,000 persons aged 10 to 19 years, were public order offences in Tasmania (1,890), the Northern Territory (1,235) and South Australia (861). Theft was the predominant principal offence in Western Australia (1,081), Queensland (1,029), the Australian Capital Territory (1,028), Victoria (871) and New South Wales (840).