NSW Custody Statistics: Quarterly Update June 2016

Full report - NSW Custody Statistics: Quarterly Update June 2016  (pdf 1.3mb)

Embargo: 10:30AM, Thursday 28 July 2016

The NSW adult prison population grew by 6.5 per cent between July 2015 and June 2016, reaching 12,550 in June this year. This brings the total increase in the NSW adult prison population over the last two years to 21 per cent.

The increase is attributable to a growth in prisoners on remand (i.e. unconvicted prisoners awaiting trial or sentence). Between July 2015 and June 2016 the number of adult prisoners on remand grew by 14.8 per cent (from 3,633 to 4,170). Over the same period, the number of sentenced prisoners rose by 2.8 per cent (from 8,148 to 8,380).

The growth in the remand population over the last 12 months is due to an increase in remand receptions and the length of time being spent on remand.

Over the last 12 months, the number of remand prisoners received into custody grew by 6.1 per cent. The average length of stay by prisoners leaving remand during the first quarter of this year was 47 days. In the last quarter this increased to 55.2 days.

The growth in the sentenced prisoner population over the past year appears to be mainly a result of offenders spending longer in custody.

Receptions of sentenced prisoners actually fell by 12.4 per cent over the 12 months to June 2016. However the average length of stay by prisoners leaving sentenced custody increased from 193.7 days in the first quarter of 2016 to 235.7 days in the second quarter.

The periods spent in custody by sentenced prisoners leaving custody that began their custodial episode as remand prisoners have also increased. The average time in custody for this group during the first quarter of 2016 was 409.1 days. In the most recent quarter this increased to 421.3 days. 

Commenting on the findings, the Director of the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) said that BOCSAR expected further growth in the prisoner population over at least the next eight months. “Our current forecast is that the prison population will reach just under 13,500 in early 2017.”

Further enquiries: Dr Don Weatherburn – 8346 1100
Copies of the report: www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au