MOST SERIOUS OFFENCE/CHARGE
A most serious offence/charge is determined for each prisoner (see Explanatory Notes, paragraphs 81-84). At 30 June 2010, the most prevalent offence/charge for prisoners in all states and territories (with the exception of Victoria and South Australia) was acts intended to cause injury. The Northern Territory had the highest proportion of its prisoner population with this offence type, at 39%, almost double the national average of 20%.
For Victoria and South Australia, the most prevalent offence/charge was sexual assault (16% and 15% respectively), followed by acts intended to cause injury (14% and 15% respectively). Sexual assault accounted for the second highest proportion of prisoners for Queensland and the Northern Territory, as well as nationally (13%). The proportion of prisoners with a most serious offence/charge of illicit drugs was well below the national average (11%) in Tasmania (1%), the Australian Capital Territory (3%) and the Northern Territory (4%), and above the national average in New South Wales (14%). (Table 3.2)
Proportion of prisoners,
selected most serious offence/charge, by state and territory