Australian Institute of Criminology

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Car thefts at 350 a day

Media Release

10 January 1997

Australian cars were being stolen at the rate of 350 a day, according to the Australian Institute of Criminology.

In preliminary figures from a paper to be released later this month, Dr Adam Graycar, the Director of the AIC, said that the Australian motor vehicle theft trade was a billion dollar business.

"Data shows the figure is around $643 million for the 95/96 financial year" Dr Graycar said. But this figure did not include the indirect costs, such as police and court expenditure, loss of earnings, higher insurance premiums.

These levels of motor vehicle theft rate Australia worse than the United States, Canada and Germany but better than England and Wales.

Young males are still the major perpetrators in the theft of motor vehicles.

The figures show that 85% of all vehicles stolen are recovered and the paper will suggest this suggests the majority of these crimes are by amateurs, eg for joy-riding.