Factors affecting remand in custody: a study of bail practices in Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia

15 Jun 1999

At any time, around 15 per cent of Australia’s 20,000 prisoners are on remand, that is, they are in custody but have not been sentenced. They are held in custody to ensure they will appear in court to answer charges, or to protect the community, or victims, or witnesses. Many people on remand do not serve a further period of imprisonment. Furthermore, the rate of remand varies significantly around the jurisdictions.

The Criminology Research Council sought to learn more about the structure and processes of remand in Australia. It put to tender a research proposal to:

• Identify the factors that may influence the processes and the rates of adult remand in custody which may contribute to variations in remand rates between jurisdictions

• Describe how remands are managed in the Australian criminal justice systems in general, by the design of “process maps’

• Identify research gaps and priorities for future research needs

• Develop a “blue print” for further research focussing on variations around Australia and assessment of best practice in relation to remand decision-making processes

The project was carried out by three scholars from South Australia, David Bamford, Sue King, and Rick Sarre. This monograph reports on the consultancy. This monograph is published for the Criminology Research Council by the Australian Institute of Criminology which administers the Criminology Research Council.

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