1. Trends in people proceeded against and convicted
Unless otherwise stated, references in this bulletin to the crime or offence group for which a person is proceeded against or convicted relate to the main charge involved. The main charge is the crime or offence receiving the most severe penalty if one or more charges are proved in a single proceeding (as defined in Annex C). The final column of Table 4(a) provides counts of individual offences with a charge proved regardless of whether or not they were the main offence involved. Please note that where a person is subject to two (or more) separate proceedings, they will be counted two (or more) times in the figures presented in this bulletin.
A total of 107,338 people were proceeded against in court in 2016-17, a fall of eight per cent on 2015-16 (116,833 proceedings). The number of convictions fell at a similar rate, down eight per cent to 92,334 from 2015-16 (99,962). This continues the general downward trend of the last ten years. It is in contrast to the rises in court activity seen between 2012-13 and 2014-15, a result of a short term rise in the number of motor vehicle offence cases reaching court. Convictions in 2016-17 were 31% lower than the ten-year high of 133,608 in 2007-08.