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Reoffending rates show further decline

10 June 2014

The numbers of offenders who go on to commit further crimes, and the frequency with which they do so, are both showing further falls, according to the latest figures from the Chief Statistician for Scotland.

Reconviction rates in Scotland: 2011-12 statistics show that the fall in the number of reconvictions has largely been driven by a decrease in reoffending by those aged under 25.

The average number of reconvictions per offender for those convicted in 2011-12 was down by nearly 4% compared with 2010-11, from 0.55 to 0.53 in 2011-12, while the reconviction rate fell from 30.1% to 29.2%.

Over the past decade the average number of reconvictions per offender has decreased by 17%, from 0.64 to 0.53, and the reconviction rate has fallen from 32.9% to 29.2%.

For the under 21 age group, the average number of reconvictions is down by almost a third over that period; and for the 21-25 age group it has fallen by more than a quarter. In comparison, reconvictions for offenders aged over 25 have remained relatively constant during the past decade.

Offenders released from short custodial sentences of less than six months have more than double the average number of reconvictions compared to offenders given community sentences.

Over the decade, the average number of reconvictions per offender for offenders given drug treatment and testing orders has decreased by almost 40% (one offence per offender on average), from 2.41 in 2002-03 to 1.45 in 2011-12.

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