Since 1998 a significant proportion of young offenders in New South Wales have been dealt with by warning, caution or youth justice conference under the Young Offenders Act 1997 rather than proceeding through the traditional court system. This study investigates the rate of reoffending among young people who were cautioned by police or who participated in a conference for the first time in 1999. The report describes the likelihood and frequency of reoffending, the time it takes to reoffend and the likelihood of receiving a penalty of imprisonment all within five years of the caution or conference. The results show that 42 per cent of the caution cohort and 58 per cent for the conference cohort reoffended within five years. This is not as high as the reoffending rate for young people who proceeded straight to court prior to the availability of diversionary options (Chen et al. 2005). Reoffending patterns were found to vary according to the offender's sex, age, Indigenous status and, to some extent, the nature of the intial offence.