About SACStat

SACStat is a database of sentencing statistics for offences sentenced in Victoria’s adult criminal courts. The database includes statistics for over 250 offences sentenced in the higher courts (the County Court and the Supreme Court) of Victoria between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2020 and over 500 offences sentenced in the Magistrates' Court of Victoria between 1 July 2016 and 30 June 2019.

What Offences Are Included in SACStat?

The higher courts data includes offences sentenced under Victorian legislation, Commonwealth legislation and common law. To be included in SACStat, an offence must have had at least 10 charges sentenced in the higher courts of Victoria over the five-year period.

The Magistrates’ Court data includes offences sentenced under Victorian legislation and common law but currently excludes offences under Commonwealth legislation. To be included in SACStat, an offence must have had at least 40 charges sentenced in the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria over the three-year period.

What Data Is Included for Each Offence?

For each offence in SACStat, the sentencing data shows:

  • sentence types imposed for cases and charges
  • outcomes for each sentence type, such as sentence length and fine amount
  • age and gender breakdown of offenders for cases.

What Is the Difference Between a Charge and a Case?

SACStat includes data on charges and cases sentenced in Victorian courts:

  • a charge is a single proven count of an offence
  • a case is a collection of one or more charges against a person sentenced at the one hearing.

The sentence types shown for charges represent the most serious penalty imposed on the charge. For example, it is possible for both a fine and a community correction order to be imposed on a single charge. This charge would be counted only once and would be included in SACStat as a community correction order for the relevant offence.

The sentence imposed on a case is known as the 'total effective sentence'. For imprisonment sentences (including suspended sentences), the total effective sentence is the total of the sentences imposed for all charges, after factoring in whether these will be served cumulatively (at the same time) or concurrently (one after the other) but before the non-parole period has been set. The total effective sentence is also known as the ‘head sentence’.

For non-custodial sentences, the total effective sentence is the most severe penalty imposed on an offender for all their charges at the one hearing. For example, in a case in which fines and community correction orders are imposed on the charges, the total effective sentence would be a community correction order.

Does SACStat Include Sentences Adjusted on Appeal?

Higher courts data incorporates decisions made by the Court of Appeal as at 30 June 2020. Magistrates’ Court data does not currently incorporate appeal decisions.

Further Information

If you’d like to know more about using SACStat, check out our How to Use SACStat page.

For information about concepts and counting rules, consult our Technical Notes.

You can find the definition of key terms used in SACStat in our Glossary.


We welcome your feedback on SACStat. You can provide feedback to us via our Contact Us page, or email us at contact@sentencingcouncil.vic.gov.au.

Last update 21 July 2021 © Sentencing Advisory Council, State of Victoria, 2021

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