Full report - NSW Criminal Courts Statistics 2014 (pdf 1.9Mb)
Release date: 10.30AM, Thursday, 28 May 2015
The time taken to finalise criminal trials in the Higher Criminal Courts has increased considerably over the last few years, according to the annual Criminal Courts Statistics Report released today by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research.
The time from committal to outcome for accused persons on bail increased by 11 per cent from 302 days in 2013 to 336 days in 2014 and the time from committal to outcome for accused in custody on remand increased by 15 per cent from 246 to 284 days.
These changes followed increases in trial court delay of 23 per cent and 6 per cent respectively between 2012 and 2013.
Commenting on the changes, the director of the Bureau, Dr Don Weatherburn, said the increase in time taken to finalise cases was due to congestion in the District Criminal Court rather than the Supreme Court.
"There are several factors contributing to delay in finalising trial cases in the District Criminal Court.
Firstly, despite the overall drop in crime, the number of people arrested for serious offences, such as drug trafficking, has increased.
Secondly, a higher proportion of persons arrested for serious offences are choosing to plead not guilty.
Thirdly, perhaps in part because of the growth in cases involving drug trafficking, which often involve extensive tape recorded evidence, trials are getting longer.
Further enquiries: Jackie Fitzgerald (02) 8346 1100 Copies of the report: www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au