Almost half of all prisoners released in 2009 had reoffended within three years, a study by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) has found.
The 47.5 per cent recidivism rate was a decrease from the 51 per cent recorded for prisoners who were released in 2008. The decrease did not apply for all categories of crime, with the recidivism rate for burglars increasing to 69.9 per cent from 60.8 per cent.
The numbers do not include prisoners who were subsequently convicted of minor road traffic offences, and the CSO has cautioned that as the statistics involve recorded offences, the true figure may be higher as a CSO review had found that not all offences reported to the Garda Síochána were recorded on its Pulse computer system.
In 2007, 7,507 individuals were released from custody, of which 3,563 reoffended within three years, based on the CSO’s exmination of prision service and Garda records.
The recidivism rate was higher for males than females, and decreased with increasing age. Likewise, the rate differed with differing categories of offences.