NSW Adult Criminal Sentencing Tool is an interactive application presenting information on principal penalties imposed on adult offenders convicted in NSW Local and Higher Criminal Courts for the most recent 5 years. Users can obtain aggregated information by offence type, penalty and sentence duration, jurisdiction and offenders' gender.
For definitions of the variables used in the Tool please visit our
Criminal Court Definitions page.
Instructions, tips and
FAQs for using this Tool are provided below, or view our YouTube tutorial.
Only adult offenders (i.e. offenders aged 18 years and over) convicted in NSW Local and Higher Criminal Courts are included. Each offender is only counted once per proven court appearance. Where an offender person has been found guilty of more than one offence in the same proven court appearance, the offence shown is prioritised by the principal offence, i.e. the offence which received the most serious penalty.
Use the drop down menus at the top of the Tool to select your offence. There are three offence levels to choose from: offence division, sub-division or group. You can only choose one offence category per drop down menu at a time. The offences automatically update to reflect only those within your selected offence division or subdivision.
For information about domestic violence or child sex offenders, use the offence division drop down menus to first select 'Acts intended to cause injury' (for assault) or 'Sexual assault and related offences' (for sex offences). The relevant domestic violence and child sex offence groups are available under the offence group drop down menu.
Offences are classified by the
Australian and New Zealand Standard Offence Classification (ANZSOC).
Use the drop down menus on the second row at the top of the Tool to further refine your selection.
Brief descriptions of each sentence type:
For further details on sentence (penalty) categories, please visit our
Criminal Court Definitions page.
You can check your selections by viewing the filters turned ‘on’ at the top of the page. Every time you make a selection using the filters at the top of the Tool each visualisation updates to reflect your selection.
In addition to the jurisdiction and gender visualisations explained above there are six graphs. Hovering over each visualisation provides percentages and counts for each data point.
This Tool works best when using a
Google Chrome internet browser. We do not guarantee the Tool's performance on other browsers.
This Tool was developed primarily for use on PCs and laptop devices. While it can be accessed on mobile devices (such as tablets and phones) the formatting and layout on these devices is not as user friendly.
The outputs produced by this Tool are broadly consistent with other published BOCSAR reports but do not match exactly due to slight differences in counting rules.
The graphs can be printed from within the Tool by either 'Print screen' from your keyboard or saved using screen shot software (e.g. Snipping Tool).
Due to limitations of Tableau Public (which is what this Tool uses) data used to create each visualisation cannot be rendered automatically. Please contact our
Information Service to enquire about obtaining the data used to generate the specific visualisation/s you are interested in.
BOCSAR releases court data twice a year, generally in May and November. To ensure court data is as accurate, valid and reliable as can be, we release data approximately 5 to 6 months after each calendar and financial year (eg in May we release data ending December for the previous year).
Please note that the Tool displays and operates slightly differently in different internet browsers (eg Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer). As such, to ensure you are receiving the most recent sentencing data available please clear your browsing history before running your data queries.
If no data is shown in a graph it is because there are either no records of that offence or the filter selections made are not available, or the records have been suppressed for confidentiality/privacy considerations.
If you have any questions or require assistance using this Tool, or have feedback for improvements in future iterations, please email