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


The effects of criminal activityas well as people's perceptions about the extent of such activity – can have a direct or indirect impact on the quality of people's lives. This chapter provides an overview of the Australian criminal justice system, including people's interaction with the system either as offenders or as victims of crime.

Data are presented on the characteristics of victims of crime and criminal offenders and on outcomes from the justice process. These data are sourced from administrative data collected by a range of agencies operating in the field of crime and justice and from household surveys conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Justice is primarily administered through state and territory governments, with local variations in legislation, processes and operational structures. By taking account of these differences, nationally comparable crime and justice statistics can be compiled and provide indicators of the level and nature of crime across Australia and the associated outcomes of the criminal justice system.

The chapter concludes with a special article Youth victimisation and offending: a snapshot, in which findings from a number of ABS crime data sources are presented.


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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.