National Drug Strategy
National Drug Strategy

The costs of tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug abuse to Australian Society in 2004/05 - Summary Report

4. Crime

prev pageTOC |next page

Table 4 below presents estimates of drug-attributable crime costs. They are certainly substantial underestimates as a result of the considerable under-reporting of crimes to police. Some component of crime costs is causally attributable jointly to alcohol and illicit drugs. It is, however, not possible to indicate what proportion of these joint costs is attributable to either alcohol individually or illicit drugs individually.

Table 4, Summary of selected drug-attributable crime costs, 2004/05


Alcohol ($m)
Illicit drugs ($m)
Both ($m)
Tangible costs
Police
747.1
1,716.9
320.2
Criminal courts
85.8
146.8
28.0
Prisons
141.8
348.6
146.6
Property
67.1
445.4
144.6
Insurance administration
14.3
94.6
30.7
Violence
187.5
196.1
203.2
Productivity of prisoners
368.0
892.1
387.7
Total tangible
1,611.5
3,840.5
1,261.0
Intangible costs
Loss of life (violence)
124.4
130.1
134.8
Total intangible costs
124.4
130.1
134.8
Total costs
1,735.9
3,970.6
1,395.8
Total n.e.i.
Tangible
1,424.0
3,644.5
1,057.8
Intangible
0.0
0.0
0.0
Relevant costs as a proportion of GDP
0.20%
0.48%
0.16%

Note: n.e.i. = not elsewhere included.

Alcohol-attributable crime cost $1.7 billion in 2004/05 while crime attributable to consumption of illicit drugs cost $4.0 billion. Crime attributable jointly to both types of drugs cost a further $1.4 billion.

prev pageTOC |next page