Crime and justice are the subjects of constant debate in Australia. Almost every Australian has views that he or she is more than willing to express on such complex questions as whether or not crime is increasing, how police efficiency can be improved, how courts should operate, and how prisons could be made more effective.
But much of this debate is expressed in highly emotive terms and often without any factual basis or real understanding of how criminal justice systems work.
This book is the first serious attempt to provide the facts on crime, police, courts, and correcttional practices in the six States and two Territories of Australia.
The authors - all members of the Research Division of the Australian Institute of Criminology - have combined their practical experience of police, court and correctional work with their academic training in law, psychology, sociology, and criminology to produce this readable and informative volume.
In his foreword, the then Commonwealth Attorney General, the Hon. R. J. Elliot, Q.C. described this book as '... a well compiled, well researched, and well documented volume' that '... provides a quick and authorative reference right across the whole range of our criminal justice system'.
While this book does not attempt to provide a solution to all of the problems of crime and justice in Australia, it does provide a means of improving the quality of debate on these subjects, and will be equally valuable to students and to concerned members of the public.