- by cnn
- 05 Dec 2023
The research paper by Prof Mirko Bagaric, the dean of law at the Swinburne University of Technology, recommends law reform to prevent imprisonment of non-violent offenders.
Bagaric noted that 42% of prisoners have not committed a violent or sexual offence. He calculated a reduction in the prison population of about one-third would be possible even if the 10% of offenders who have committed serious property crime or serious drug offences remained in prison.
In October Leigh told the Australian Institute of Criminology that taxpayers are each forking out $140 more a year for prisons than would be needed if Australia maintained its 1985 rates of incarceration.
In Australian states, which are responsible for most criminal law, both major parties typically make a virtue of tougher sentencing.
The US has recently experienced declines in the prison population, with some of the biggest declines in liberal states in the north-east.
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