Kidnapping and abduction

Kidnapping/abduction is defined by the Australian Bureau of Statistics as the unlawful seizing or taking away of another person either against that person's will, or against the will of any parent or legal guardian of that person. Between 1995 and 2004 the rate of kidnapping/abduction increased from 2.5 to 3.8 victims per 100,000 population. Throughout this period the rate of kidnapping of persons aged 19 or less has been more than twice as high as of persons aged 20 and over. Victims of abduction are more likely to be female than male. In 2004, of the 768 people who were kidnapped/abducted, 69 percent were female, while the rate for females aged 10-19 years was 17.5 per 100,000. Where victim/offender relationship was reported in 2003, abduction by offenders previously not known to the victim was most common (62%), followed by abduction by a non-family member known to the victim (18%), and by a family member (12%).

Kidnapping/abduction, rates per 100,000, 1995-2004 [see attached PDF for graph]


  • Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics 2005. Recorded crime - victims, Australia 2004. cat. no. 4510.0. Canberra: ABS.