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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2012  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/05/2012   
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Crime and justice

FEDERAL DEFENDANTS

The data presented for federal defendants includes information for defendants charged with federal offences that were dealt with by the criminal jurisdiction of the Higher, Magistrates and Children's Courts of Australia. These data are available for all states and territories except Tasmania (which are collectively referred to as Selected states and territories).

In 2009–10, there were 14,007 defendants finalised in Australia's criminal courts with at least one federal offence for the Selected states and territories. Of these, 765 were finalised in the Higher Courts, 13,028 in the Magistrates' Courts and 214 in the Children's Courts.

The offence categories referred to relate to the defendant's most serious offence, known as the 'principal federal offence'. Only offences enacted under Commonwealth legislation are considered in scope for data about federal defendants.

About one-third (34%) of defendants finalised across all court levels had a principal federal offence of Fraud and deception, followed by Offences against justice procedures (26%) and Abduction and harassment (12%) (graph 13.21).


13.21 FEDERAL DEFENDANTS - ALL COURTS, Selected principal federal offences



Of the defendants heard in the Higher Courts, almost three-quarters had a principal federal offence in the following three ASOC 2008 Divisions: Illicit drug offences (26%), Fraud and deception (25%) and Sexual assault (21%).

For the Magistrates' Court, almost three-quarters had a principal federal offence in the following three ASOC 2008 Divisions: Fraud and deception (35%), Offences against justice procedures (27%) and Abduction and harassment (12%).

More than three-quarters of defendants in the Children's court had a principal federal offence in the following four ASOC 2008 Divisions: Abduction and harassment (41%), Offences against justice procedures (16%), Public order offences (11%) and Theft (11%).

 

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Statistics contained in the Year Book are the most recent available at the time of preparation. In many cases, the ABS website and the websites of other organisations provide access to more recent data. Each Year Book table or graph and the bibliography at the end of each chapter provides hyperlinks to the most up to date data release where available.


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