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Crime in Australia

crimeCompared to many parts of the world, Australia is a very safe country in which to live. In fact, that may a strong reason you are moving here.

Rates of violent crime are lower than for other developed countries such as the USA and Britain. The murder rate in Australia has also shown a clear downward trend in recent years. Car theft has also decreased significantly, however, Australia still has one of the highest rates of property break-ins in the world.

There were almost 70,000 seizures of illegal drugs in Australian in 2010/11; the highest number in 10 years. There were almost 85,000 drug-related arrests in 2010/11, the second highest number recorded in the last decade.

How safe do people feel

An October 2011 report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) (based on 2007 figures) found that 64 per cent of people in Australia feel safe walking alone at night in the area that they live. This was slightly lower than the OECD average of 68 per cent.

Australia ranked ahead of countries such as The Netherlands, Norway, Italy, and Portugal, but was well behind New Zealand, Canada, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and even USA.

Reported assaults & muggings

Australia ranked extremely low among developed countries for reported physical assaults and muggings, according to the OECD report. It was well behind countries such as Belgium, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, France, Italy, and Spain. However, Australia was, surprisingly, ahead of countries such as Britain, Israel, Poland, USA, Japan, and Canada. However, this could be because people are more likely to report such crimes in Australia than the other countries.


The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recorded 229 intentional homicides in Australia in 2010. However the UNODC figures also show a clear downward trend in the murder count in Australia since 1995.