New Report Examines Aggregate Prison Sentences in Victoria

Date of Publication
18 April 2023

The Council has released a new report examining the use of aggregate prison sentences in Victoria.

An aggregate prison sentence is a single sentence of imprisonment covering multiple offences, instead of each offence receiving its own separate sentence.

The report finds that during the 10-year period from 2011 to 2020:

  • for offences that received imprisonment, the proportion that was part of an aggregate prison sentence increased from 82% to 91% in the Magistrates’ Court, and from 1% to 17% in the higher courts
  • in 48% of instances in the Magistrates’ Court and 72% in the higher courts, the number of charges in each aggregate prison sentence was between two and four
  • the most common offence types receiving aggregate prison sentences were fraud offences (94%) and burglary offences (92%).

The report discusses the various advantages and disadvantages of aggregate prison sentences. For instance, while they can improve court efficiencies and reduce a perception of artificiality in sentencing, they can also reduce transparency in how the total sentence was constructed.

Aggregate Prison Sentences in Victoria can be downloaded from our website.