n Institute for Security Studies Papers - Paying for crime : South African spending on criminal justice

Volume 2005, Issue 115
  • ISSN : 1026-0404



This paper explores how South Africa's criminal justice system has evolved over the past decade by looking at the approach government has taken to resourcing it. It describes the growth in expenditure on criminal justice, disaggregating this between departments and over time. It suggests that South Africa's spending on criminal justice exceeds international norms, but that on a per capita basis and in relation to our levels of crime, the criminal justice system is relatively under-resourced. It argues, however, that it would be unaffordable to attempt to match our levels of resources to international norms and that, in any event, the current prioritisation of increased social expenditure over increased criminal justice spending has not negatively affected crime levels.

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