Sydney Institute of Criminology
CrimNet is an electronic criminal justice information network, sponsored by the Sydney Institute of Criminology. It aims to fulfil the need for a means of regular and instant communication between criminal justice professionals, practitioners, academics and students in Australia and overseas.
BOCSAR releases 'NSW Recorded Crime Statistics 2016' report

"Crime across most of NSW has either remained stable or fallen over the last two years. The only major offence to have increased across the State during this period was steal from retail store (up 6.1%). This offence has now been trending upwards for six successive quarters. 

The premises reporting the greatest increases last year were: supermarkets (incidents increased 16.9% which accounted for 59% of the total increase in retail theft), department stores (incidents increased 11.6% accounting for 24% of the total increase in retail theft) and shopping complexes (incidents increased 6.2% accounting for 14% of the total increase in retail theft).

The most commonly stolen items are liquor, clothing, personal items such as cosmetics, toiletries and razors followed by food (including beverages and confectionary).

The offences trending down were:

  1. robbery without a weapon (down 13.3%);
  2. robbery with a weapon not a firearm (down 13.9%);
  3. break and enter dwelling (down 6.2%);
  4. motor vehicle theft (down 7.3%);
  5. steal from person (down 13.3%);
  6. fraud (down 3.9%).

The Central Coast and Western NSW have experienced significant increases in crime over the two year period between January 2015 and December 2016.

The Central Coast experienced a significant increase in five of the 17 major offences: domestic assault (up 21.5%), indecent assault (up 21.6%), break and enter-dwelling (up 12.6%), steal from motor vehicle (up 18.1%) and malicious damage to property (up 8.3%).

The Far West and Orana have experienced significant increases in four major property offences: break and enter-dwelling (up 22.4%), motor vehicle theft (up 34.8%), steal from retail store (up 28.3%) and steal from dwelling (up 13.7%).

The growth in crime in the Far West and Orana is particularly concerning because the crime rates in these areas are already more than twice, and in some cases more than three times the State average.

Commenting on the results the Director of the Bureau, Dr Don Weatherburn, said that he was amazed at the continuing fall in robbery and high volume property crime. "Most people don't realize it but rates of robbery in NSW are now back to where they were in the late 1970s. Rates of home burglary and motor vehicle theft are the lowest they've been since records began.""

To read the full report, please follow the link.

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Upcoming Events
Yarn bombs, pussyhats and knitting nannas: The criminology of craftivism

Date: Thursday 20 April 2017, 3.30-5pm
Location: C412, Level 4, C Block, QUT Gardens Point Campus

Craftivism – the practice of utilising various forms of handmade crafts as a vehicle for individual/collective agency and to advocate political or social viewpoints (Greer 2007) – has recently surfaced in response to a range of social and political concerns. Acts of craftivism raise important questions for criminologists about the use of public space, power, and resistance. As one example of a growing ‘craftivist’ movement that has been steadily gaining momentum since the early to mid-2000s, yarn bombing has been a particularly popular form of craftivism. As an urban craft movement that melds the skills of knitting or crochet with the act of graffiti, yarn bombing has the potential to contribute to criminological understandings of graffiti and street art, particularly on issues of gender, perceptions of and motivations for graffiti, and the commodification of crime, amongst other things. Drawing on interviews with yarn bombers and craftivists, this presentation will explore how such acts can be understood and explored through a criminological lens.

This seminar will be presented by Dr Alyce McGovern. She is a Senior Lecturer in Criminology in the School of Social Sciences, UNSW Australia. She has researched widely in the area of crime and media, including police-media relations, police use of social media, and young people and sexting. She is the co-author of Policing and Media: Public Relations, Simulations and Communications (2013 with Lee, Routledge) and Sexting
and Young People (2015 with Crofts, Lee and Milivojevic, Palgrave).

To register for this event, please RSVP to am.gurd@qut.edu.au by Monday 17 April 2017.
The Reintegration Puzzle: Changing Systems from the Inside Out
Date: 21-23 June 2017
Location: Rydges Sydney Central, Sydney, Australia

The 13th Annual Reintegration Puzzle Conference: Changing Systems from the Inside Out will focus on how systems work to enable people to successfully reintegrate into the community after prison and how they create additional barriers. The role people with lived experience of prison can play in changing systems will also be explored.
Speakers at the conference include:
  • ​Glenn E. Martin -  JustLeadership USA (JLUSA)
  • Keenan Mundine - Inside Out Aboriginal Justice Consultancy
  • Lana Sandas - Women in Prison Advocacy Network (WIPAN)
Further information about the conference can be found at the conference website.
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Recent Publications
Regulating Preventive Justice: Principle, Policy and Paradox

Edited by Tamara Tulich, Rebecca Ananian-Welsh, Simon Bronitt, Sarah Murray

Like medicine, law is replete with axioms of prevention. ‘Prevention is better than cure’ has a long pedigree in both fields. 17th century jurist Sir Edward Coke observed that ‘preventing justice excelleth punishing justice’. A century later, Sir William Blackstone similarly stated that ‘preventive justice is …preferable in all respects to punishing justice’. This book evaluates the feasibility and legitimacy of state attempts to regulate prevention. Though prevention may be desirable as a matter of policy, questions are inevitably raised as to its limits and legitimacy, specifically, how society reconciles the desirability of averting risks of future harm with respect for the rule of law, procedural fairness and human rights.

While these are not new questions for legal scholars, they have been brought into sharper relief in policy and academic circles in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks. Over the past 15 years, a body of legal scholarship has tracked the intensified preventive focus of anti-terrorism law and policy, observing how this focus has impacted negatively upon traditional legal frameworks. However, preventive law and policy in other contexts, such as environmental protection, mental health, immigration and corruption has not received sustained focus. This book extends that body of scholarship, through use of case studies from these diverse regulatory settings, in order to examine and critique the principles, policies and paradoxes of preventive justice.

The book and ebook can be purchased online here.

Criminal justice system - prison sentences
By the Queensland Audit Office

Achieving intended sentence outcomes depends on how efficiently and effectively the court's prison sentence is administered.

Some sentence calculations are simple. Others are more complex, involving considerations such as multiple convictions, specific sentence requirements under various State and/or Commonwealth legislation, and consideration of time the prisoner has served on remand awaiting trial (known as presentence custody). If those who calculate the sentence get it wrong, they can expose the community to risk by releasing prisoners early into the community (called a discharge in error) or infringe on prisoners' rights by holding them longer than they are legally entitled to (called an unlawful detention).

Sentencing errors also expose the state to unnecessary costs associated with managing prisoners beyond their sentence, locating and returning prisoners released in error, and managing complaints, compensation, and legal costs.

This audit examined how well the Queensland criminal justice system exchanges and records data to calculate and administer custodial (prison) sentences accurately. This is the first of two reports from the criminal justice audit. The second report is due to be tabled in parliament in early 2017 and focuses on the integration and reliability of criminal justice data.

The report can be found online here.

Intervening to address communication difficulties in incarcerated youth: Six case studies
By P.C Snow and M.N. Woodward

Purpose: Although a number of studies have described high rates of wide-ranging language difficulties in youth offender samples, minimal intervention research has been conducted with this population. The aim of this study was to implement a small-scale speech-language pathology (SLP) intervention study in a secure youth justice facility and to identify key practical challenges associated with conducting SLP interventions in youth custodial settings.

Method: Six young males were recruited and underwent assessment via a range of standardised and self-report communication measures. Measures of nonverbal IQ and of therapeutic engagement were also employed, and participants’ own goals concerning communication competence were incorporated into treatment. Participants completed seven to 16 weeks’ of 1:1 SLP intervention, once or twice per week.

Result: Therapeutic engagement was generally strong. All participants made gains and responded favourably regarding the usefulness of the intervention. Many practical issues conspired to make this a challenging SLP intervention setting. Conclusion: Youth custodial sentences represent an important opportunity for high-risk youths with compromised communication skills to receive specialist SLP therapeutic services to reduce the impact of their communication difficulties post-release into the community.

The article can be found online here.
The Australian National Audit Office releases new report on Proceeds of Crime
The objective of this audit was to examine the effectiveness of the Australian Federal Police’s, the Australian Financial Security Authority’s and the Attorney-General’s Department’s administration of property and funds under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (the POCA) provides a scheme (the ‘POCA scheme’) to trace, restrain and confiscate the proceeds of crimes against Commonwealth law. It seeks to disrupt, deter and reduce crime by undermining the profitability of criminal enterprises, depriving persons of the benefits derived from crime, and preventing reinvestment of the proceeds in further criminal activity.

The POCA also provides a scheme that allows for confiscated funds to be given back to the community in an endeavour to prevent and reduce the harmful effects of crime in Australia. This mechanism has provided funding to non-government and community organisations, local councils, as well as Commonwealth and state police forces and Commonwealth criminal intelligence entities.

To read the full report, please follow the link.  
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Calls for Submissions
17th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology (ESC)
The Conference Programme Committee for the 17th Annual Conference of the ESC invites you to submit an abstract for oral or poster presentation. The conference theme is “Challenging ‘Crime’ and ‘Crime Control’ in Contemporary Europe” and will be hosted at Cardiff University (UK) from 13-16 September 2017. All submitted abstracts will be reviewed by the Conference Programme Committee. All accepted abstracts will be published electronically. Please note: all presenters must be fully registered for the conference.

Submissions close on the 15th of June 2017. For more information and to make a submission, please visit the event website.
AJHR announces new publishing partnership with Taylor & Francis
As of 1st January 2017, the Australian Journal of Human Rights (AJHR) has entered into a new publishing partnership with Taylor & Francis, one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, eBooks, text books and reference works. The move will increase the AJHR’s online global presence and deliver higher citations for its authors while continuing to provide a forum for scholarship and discussion on contemporary human rights issues.

Justine Nolan, an Executive Editor of the AJHR, believes that ‘this partnership is the perfect opportunity to broaden the reach of the AJHR both domestically and internationally. It is also recognition of the growing impact of the Journal and the quality of our double peer-reviewed articles. We’re looking to continue this level of excellence and welcome new submissions.’

The AJHR will be published three times per year. For more about the AJHR, visit our website. To check your subscription status or begin a new subscription, please contact enquiries@tandf.com.au

Submit your article to the AJHR
The deadline for submission of articles for consideration in the AJHR is:
  • 1 June 2017 for Issue 23 (3), with a publishing date of November 2017
  • 1 December 2017 for Issue 24 (1), with a publishing date of April 2018
The AJHR uses an online management system for submission of articles and book reviews for publication. Please visit the AJHR website to begin the process. Registration takes only a few minutes. Contact us ajhr@unsw.edu.au for any questions or inquiries.
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Job Advertisements
Professor of Criminology - Deakin University, Victoria
The School of Humanities and Social Sciences is seeking to recruit a Professor to join a team of established colleagues working in Criminology. The Professor will provide outstanding academic and research leadership in the area of Criminology and promote the School within relevant academic and professional communities in Australia and internationally.

This will include:
  • Initiating and contributing to School and Faculty teaching, research and program development and entrepreneurial activity in the area of Criminology.
  • Contributing to service activities locally and internationally particularly in relation to student recruitment and will champion the strategic directions of the School, the Faculty and the University.
  • Leadership of teams in teaching and/or research which enhance the achievement of Deakin's strategic goals in research, teaching, engagement and innovation.
Candidates will have:
  • PhD in a relevant discipline.
  • Original, innovative and distinguished contribution to scholarship and teaching, research and research supervision.
  • An eminent authority at the national and international level in research and scholarship through publication in high quality and impact outlets.
  • Success in obtaining competitive external research grants.

Applications close on 7th May 2017. For more information, please follow the link.

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