Australia or jail - which was worse?

British criminals convicted at the Old Bailey in the 18th and 19th Centuries were either jailed, transported to Australia or hanged.

Researchers are now examining whether jail or transportation was more effective at preventing reoffending.

Historians are examining the court records of every person convicted at the London courthouse between 1785 and 1875.

They will then assess how many of those jailed in Britain reoffended and assess immigration records in Tasmania - where many convicts were sent - as well as biometric data and genealogical research.

Principal investigator Professor Barry Godfrey, from Liverpool University, talks about what jail and transportation were like for those convicted by Britain's judicial system.

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All images copyright of Getty Images.

Music: J.S. Bach's Double Concerto for oboe, violin and orchestra, published by JW Media Music Ltd; Beethoven funeral march, arranged by Gerhard Kanzian, and Australia national anthem, arranged by Eric Banks.

Slideshow production by Rebecca Cafe.

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