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    The release of the latest sexual assault sentencing statistics have revealed that three out of four offenders received a jail term.

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      Sexual Assault Statistics NSW 2023

      The release of the latest sexual assault sentencing statistics have revealed that three out of four offenders received a jail term.

      The analysis from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) assessed cases throughout Australia between 2010-11 and 2019-20.

      There was a total of 53,570 sexual assault offenders in that period.

      The average term of imprisonment was four and a half years. This was an increase over the previous decade.

      Sexual Assault Statistics

      Will Milne, ABS Director of the National Centre for Crime and Justice Statistics explained that after accounting for population growth, the male sexual assault offender rate saw a small increase from 46 offenders per 100,000 males in 2010-11, to 52 offenders per 100,000 in 2019-20.

      “Nearly all police proceedings against sexual assault offenders (94 per cent) were formal charges that had to be answered in a criminal court.”

      53 per cent of the 46,131 sexual assault court cases between 2010-11 and 2019-20 were finalised in a higher criminal court, such as the District Court in New South Wales or the County Court in Victoria. These courts hear more serious criminal charges than the Local or Magistrates Court.

      “Three in four sexual assault defendants (76 per cent) who had a guilty outcome in a Higher Criminal Court were sentenced to serve time in prison, with an average sentence length of four and a half years,” Mr Milne said.

      This increases for more serious charges such as aggravated sexual assault.

      The percentage of sexual assault defendants who were either found guilty or pleaded guilty in a higher criminal court and were sentenced to full-time imprisonment increased from 71 per cent in 2010-11 to 80 per cent in 2019-20.

      The analysis of sexual assault statistics also revealed that one in three prisoners (32 per cent) who were imprisoned for sexual assault had been sentenced to jail previously.

      Sexual Assault Conviction Rate

      According to BOSCAR statistics, the conviction rate for sexual assault offences that proceed to trial is approximately 66%. The number of sexual offences reported to police increased from 3,541 to 4,444 from 2015 to 2019. However, only 19% of these incidents proceeded to trial in 2019.

      The reasons for a case not proceeding to trial can include a particularly weak prosecution case, the complaint not wanting the case to proceed, or the defendant pleading guilty to less serious charges in lieu of the sexual offences being withdrawn.

      In cases where the matter proceeds to trial and an accused is found ‘not guilty’, and a defendant is able to win a sexual assault case, the jury would not have been satisfied beyond reasonable doubt as to the guilt of the accused.

      Sexual Intercourse Without Consent

      The maximum penalty for sexual intercourse without consent is 14 years Imprisonment. There is also a Standard Non-Parole Period of 7 years imprisonment.

      Despite this there have been a number of recent examples of these charges being dismissed after an accused retains experienced criminal lawyers. Having the best sexual assault lawyers in Sydney will go a long way towards beating these charges. Call Astor Legal on (02) 7804 2823. Or, you can email

      The definition of sexual assault is engaging in sexual intercourse with another person without their consent. It is contained in Section 61I of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).

      Sexual assault allegations are far more common today than at any time in the past. Community attitudes have changed shifted, in large part due to the #metoo movement. Unsurprisingly, this has made fighting such allegations more difficult than ever before.

      Often, a defence of ‘honest and reasonable mistake’ can be raised on the issue of consent. This is particularly so if the Accused took positive steps to determine whether consent was given. In this situation, if the Accused believes that the complainant was consenting, they may be able to defend the charge.

      One of the common defences to sexual assault is identification. If the Crown cannot establish that the Accused was the offender, then the offence cannot be proved. Often experts can be used such as DNA, fingerprint, CCTV and intoxication experts to cast doubt on identification.

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