4517.0 - Prisoners in Australia, 2009 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/12/2009   
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This publication presents national statistics on prisoners who were in adult corrective services custody on 30 June 2009. These statistics describe the characteristics of prisoners, their sentence length, the most serious offence/charge for which offenders are imprisoned, and provide a basis for measuring change over time.


Offence data in this publication for the 2009 reference period are based on the Australian Standard Offence Classification (ASOC), 2008 (Second edition) (cat. no. 1234.0) and the revised National Offence Index, 2009 (cat. no. 1234.0.55.001) for all jurisdictions except Queensland and Western Australia. These jurisdictions are yet to implement the second edition of ASOC (ASOC08), therefore their 2009 data are presented on the ASOC97 and NOI02 basis. Data for 2008 and earlier reference periods for all jurisdictions are based on ASOC97 and NOI02.

ASOC08 was adopted to reflect changes that have occurred in criminal legislation since ASOC97 was released, as well as satisfying emerging user requirements for offence data. NOI09 reflects the revisions included in ASOC08. For further details see the Technical Note and Appendices 1 and 2.

Historical imprisonment rates have been revised using population estimates and projections benchmarked on the 2006 Census of Population and Housing. Data have been backcast for the period 1999 to 2008. For further information, see Explanatory Notes, paragraphs 22-24 and 26-30.

The format of this issue has been changed from previous issues. National data, state and territory data, and Indigenous data are presented in separate chapters.


Discrepancies may occur between sums of component items and totals across tables due to rounding and randomisation.


More information about ABS activities in the field of crime and justice statistics is available from the Crime and Justice theme page on the ABS website <www.abs.gov.au>. Details of other ABS publications relating to Crime and Justice statistics can be found in paragraphs 100-101 of the Explanatory Notes.


The ABS acknowledges the valuable contribution of the Board of Management and Advisory Group of the National Corrective Services Statistics Unit and the staff of the various agencies that provide the statistics that are presented in this publication.


For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Robert Letheby on Melbourne (03) 9615 7423.