Aims of Sentencing
The overall main aim is to achieve justice
There are minimum and maximum sentence available
There are four indiviudal main aims of sentencing
There are guidelines judges have to follow
Aims of Sentencing: Retribution
This is based on the idea that a crime deserves to be met by punishment.
"An eye for an eye"
This includes being jailed, unpaid work in the community or a fine.
Aims of sentencing: Deterrence
This is aimed at reducing future levels of crime.
There are two types of deterrance:
- General - To deter other potential offenders by making an example of offenders
- Individual - To deter D from re-offending
Aims of sentencing: Reform and Rehabilitation
This is when the sentence is to try and repair D's character and make a better person. The aim is to remove the cause of the problem, for example, alcohol/drugs.
This is often seen as having a negative effect, as it can be difficult for offenders to find a job upon release, leading to re-offending
Aims of sentencing: Protection
This keeps the public safe from the offender
For dangerous offenders, prison is the only option, but this is only effective for when they are inside.
Other examples inclue a curfew or exclusion.
Aims of sentencing: Reparation
This is payment of compensation to the victim through resorative justice which gives victims the chance to tell offenders the impact of the crime on their life, and receive an apology
Sentences available: Custodial
This can include life imprisonment and discretionary life, often in cases of murder. For life imprisonment, the judges set a minimum term according to the type of murder. Discretionary Life includes offences such as S18 GBH.
This can also include suspended sentences, where the offender is given a time in which they cannot reoffend, or they will face the sentence.
Sentences available: Community Sentence
This is non-custodial and can include:
- unpaid work up to 300 hours
- a curfew
- alcohol treatment
- supervision order
- exclusions from a certain area
Sentences available: Financial
These can include fines
There is a maximum of £500 in the magistrates court, but unlimited in the crown court
This can also include a compensation order
Sentences available: Discharge
There are two types of discharge:
Absoloute - Imposes no penalty (goes on record but no further action)
Conditional - If further offence is committed in the stated tiem period given then original sentence can be resentenced
Sentences available: restorative justice
This aims to rehabilitate the offender so they face up to their crime