How Countries Around The World Started Their Law Enforcement Agencies

While law enforcement agencies across the globe share many similarities, they also have many differences. Every country has its own unique way of enforcing the law based on their country’s history. The structure and organization of law enforcement agencies can vary quite dramatically, but whether you’re in New Zealand, Japan or Canada, the police usually share the same goals: maintaining public order; preventing and ensuring safety and security of the people, and preventing and investigating crimes. Some countries are more adept than others. Some are outright terrible. Here is how different countries started their law enforcement agencies.

Convicts Turned Cops

While their jobs now are to arrest criminals, Australia’s first police force was made up entirely of convicts. In 1788, New South Wales was being policed by the UK’s Royal Navy. A lack of rations began to arise, and Governor Phillip realized that the colony needed its own police force. The Night Watch was created. The only problem was that the only people available to man the Night Watch were the transported convicts. Twelve of the best-behaved convicts were chosen, separated into four gangs and assigned with patrolling. In 1790, more convicts were chosen to form the Sydney Foot Police. They all did their job quite effectively, as crime plummeted.