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 traffic in, and abuse of, illicit drugs results in significant social and financial costs to both individuals and the community. To minimise the harm associated with illicit drug activity, there is close co-operation between the Australian Government, the state and territory governments, the various police services and other law enforcement agencies. Included in these agencies is the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service which has, among other things, responsibility for the enforcement of laws controlling the import and export of illicit drugs. These agencies direct particular attention to monitoring the various types and forms of illicit drugs and identifying emerging patterns of use through the analysis of law enforcement data on illicit drug seizures and arrests.

In 2009–10, by far the largest category of drug arrests involved cannabis offences, with 57,170 arrests, or 67% of the national total. The next largest category of arrests involved amphetamine offences, with 13,982 arrests, or 16% of the national total (table 13.9).

13.9 DRUG ARRESTS—2009–10(a)
Drug type

57 170
Heroin and other opioids
2 767
Amphetamine-type stimulants
13 982
1 244
Other and unknown
9 263
85 252

(a) Includes arrests where consumer/provider information was not recorded.
Source: Australian Crime Commission, Australian Illicit Drug Report 2009–10.


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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.