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Aggregate sentence length
Of all sentenced prisoners, 5% (1,077) were serving a life term or other indeterminate sentence. Just over one quarter (26% or 5,941) of sentenced prisoners had an aggregate sentence length imposed ranging from two years to less than five years, while 22% (5,042) had an aggregate sentence length of between five years and under 10 years. Approximately 33% (7,450) of prisoners had an aggregate sentence length of less than two years. Periodic detainees accounted for less than 1% (63) of all sentenced prisoners.
Excluding prisoners with indeterminate and periodic detention sentences, the median aggregate sentence length for sentenced prisoners was three years and two months (38 months) in 2012, a decrease from three years and three months (39 months) in 2011. For information about interpreting mean and median sentence length based on a census 'snapshot' see Explanatory Notes, paragraphs 76-78.
The longest median aggregate sentence lengths at 30 June 2012 were for homicide (approximately 14.6 years or 175 months), sexual assault (7 years or 84 months) and illicit drug offences (5.5 years or 66 months). (Table 2.9)
Expected time to serve
Expected time to serve refers to the time between date of reception for this episode and earliest date of release. One quarter (25%) of sentenced prisoners (5,644) had an expected time to serve between two and less than five years, while 20% of prisoners (4,402) had an expected time to serve between one and under two years.
Excluding prisoners with indeterminate, life without a minimum, and periodic detention sentences, the median expected time to serve for sentenced prisoners at 30 June 2012 was just under 2 years (23 months).
The median expected time to serve was highest for the offence of homicide (approximately 11 years or 135 months), followed by sexual assault (4.8 years or 57 months). (Table 2.9)