Are Custodial Sentences the most economical and effective way of Crime Prevention?

Custodial sentences are supposed to be an efficient manner of cut downing offense, implementing penalty for the offense committed. The chief purposes of tutelary sentencing is Retribution, Denunciation, Deterrence, Rehabilitation and Reparation, but are tutelary sentences ever the most economical and best manner of offense bar?

The thought of Retribution is to implement a penalty on the wrongdoer as a consequence of the actions and the offenses they have committed.

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Denunciation is aimed to be a manner of recognition and foregrounding the fact of society’s un-acceptance and zero tolerance policy of offenses being committed without being punished. This should give satisfaction to society that there is justness being done to felons. [ 1 ]

Lord Denning described denouncement as: ‘’Punishment is the manner in which society expresses its denouncement of incorrect making, and in order to keep regard for the jurisprudence it is indispensable that the penalty inflicted for sedate offenses should adequately reflect the repugnance felt by the great bulk of citizens for them.’’ [ 2 ]

Custodial sentences are supposed to be besides used as a Deterrence and a preventive step to forestall offenses from being committed in the hereafter by giving rough sentences for offenses the authorities hopes this will forestall offenses being committed in the hereafter particularly where rough sentences are given. [ 3 ]

One of the chief purposes of rehabilitation is to reform and rehabilitate them so that when they are released back into society they are educated and that they are less likely to perpetrate offenses when they are released. It is good for wrongdoers to be educated and have entree to makings whilst being imprisoned which makes the clip spent inside good and so one time rehabilitated have the accomplishments they need to happen a occupation when released back into the community so that they dot have to fall back back to offense as a manner to do money. [ 4 ]

The chief purpose of rehabilitation is to reform the wrongdoer and rehabilitate him or her into society, so that they are less likely to perpetrate offenses in the hereafter. This is either because they either learn to see the injury they are doing to society or because they learn through instruction, preparation and other signifiers of aid. It is an purpose that looks into the hereafter of the suspect. It has the hope that the offender?s behavior will be altered by the punishment imposed, so they will non re-offend in the hereafter.

Reparation allows compensation to the victims of the offenses where the tribunals have the power to order the wrongdoer to refund and give compensation to the victim for the offense they have committed.

In an ideal universe custodial sentences are supposed to be the most good manner of offense bar although this is in theory, in pattern this is non ever the instance. For illustration certain felons offend to feed a drug or intoxicant dependence.

We know for more serious offenses and repetition wrongdoers that tutelary sentences are the lone option nevertheless in some other less serious offenses it may be more cost effectual and economical if the wrongdoer had to pay compensation non merely to the victim but besides the same or even more to the authorities. This could go a more effectual manner in offense decrease if wrongdoers really have to pay money as opposed to merely traveling to prison where in fact the authorities and the revenue enhancement remunerator have to pay for them, shelter, provender and dress them instead if the felons were the 1s who had to pay this may give an income to the authorities every bit good as counterbalancing the victims.

In Section 152 9 ( 2 ) Of The Criminal Justice Act 2003 ( amended in 2012 LASPO ) , states that, ‘’ ‘The tribunalMUST NOTbase on balls a tutelary sentence unless it is of the sentiment that the offense, or the combination of the offense and one or more offenses associated with it, wasSo Seriousthat neither a all right entirely nor a community sentence can be justified for the offence’

There are certain limitations as per Section.79 ( 2 ) of the Powers of Criminal Courts Service Act 2000 ( PCC ( S ) ) that: –

  1. That the offense, or the combination of the offense and more or more offenses associated with it, was so serious that merely such a sentence can be justified for the offense ; or
  2. Where the offenses are a violent or sexual offense, that merely such a sentence would be equal to protect the populace from serious injury. [ 5 ]

Custodial sentences in this context may non ever be the most effectual manner of offense bar and rehabilitation of the felon and farther forestalling offenses from being committed in the hereafter. However this may be good to society if the wrongdoer poses certain hazard to the general public nevertheless wrongdoers at this degree frequently have a entire neglect for the jurisprudence an frequently do non mind traveling to imprison as gaol offers a warm bed with nutrient and shelter frequently many wrongdoers don’t have this in society.

Housing wrongdoers in prison is really dearly-won to the authorities and the revenue enhancement remunerator. In a study disclosed by the Minister of Justice for 2012-13 province the cost of lodging one captive entirely a Male CAT B captive to be ?33,632. [ 6 ]

It can be said by some that felons are merely thrown into prison without really making much in order to rehabilitate the felons this can be seen clearly due to the overcrowding of the prison population. In Lord Carters reappraisal in 2007 of prisons, ‘Securing the Future’ , where he predicted that from June 2014 that there will be a deficiency of prison topographic points and their could potentially be a deficit of topographic points every bit high as 13,000. That puts more force per unit area on the authorities to supply financess and construct new prisons in order to ease the of all time increasing sum of felons being put in prison. [ 7 ]

Due to prisons being overcrowded this has accordingly had a knock on consequence an disrupted the rehabilitation of captives, since captives are frequently moved about as the prison service attempts to ease the fluctuation in prison Numberss and to alleviate themselves from emphasis. This means educating the wrongdoers is frequently interrupted and/or neglected as a consequence and frequently before they are able to complete finishing classs they have started. [ 8 ]

The fact captives are being moved around makes it hard to keep and put out programs for rehabilitating persons, so as a consequence doing captives employable when they finish their sentence becomes more hard ensuing in repetition wrongdoers perpetrating offenses and so once more stoping back in gaol at the cost of the revenue enhancement remunerator.

This rhythm will go on if important alterations are non made to the justness system in the up and other governments who work together. The deficiency of neglecting to work together efficaciously comes at a immense monetary value to the authorities and the revenue enhancement remunerator and wastes financess, In an Audit conducted by ‘The National Audit Office’ , they held that 62 % of tribunal proceedings in the UK that instances were non successful and did non travel in front due to drop in charges on the twenty-four hours of the hearing or hapless readying and deficiency of grounds which caused instances to be dropped. [ 9 ]

If the British justness system were more inclined to rehabilitating and educating wrongdoers as opposed to merely seting them in gaol and paying small attending to the rehabilitation, they may happen immense nest eggs the authorities and the British revenue enhancement remunerator.

In a study by the ‘Matrix Knowledge Group’ , who made a study called, ’ For and Against Prison’ ; they made some singular anticipations associating to this affair.

The purpose of their study was excessively cod grounds which was needed to place and sketch and argument for and against wrongdoers being served with tutelary sentences, including options and an economic prognosis of the current costs and the possible nest eggs that could be earned by rehabilitating persons as opposed to merely seting them in prison. [ 10 ]

In the CaseR V Howells ( 1999 )Lord Bingham stated that: ‘’There is no bright line which separates offenses which are so serious that merely a tutelary sentence can be justified from offenses which are non so serious as to necessitate the passing of a tutelary sentence’ ( pg. 103 ) [ 11 ]

The Matrix study stated that if there were to be adult community intercessions and Drug rehabilitation available in the community for wrongdoers known as ‘Drug Treatment Alternative To Prison Programme ( DTAP ) ’ , where wrongdoers will be put on intense programmes, inclusive of group Sessionss with in their community which would assist to learn them societal accomplishments and values, aid to go drug free, behavioral aid besides including educational plans which would assist to do wrongdoers employable and have a life which is positive an make them non dependant on drugs. [ 12 ]

If operations were available like this in the community it would be around ?5,299 per wrongdoer each twelvemonth this is non a batch compared to the cost of lodging wrongdoers in prison. These types of community intercession could give a monolithic economy to the authorities the matrix study predicts that there could be a economy of ?88,469 to the revenue enhancement remunerator entirely, and a farther economy of ?202,775 merely for educating the wrongdoers and forestalling offenses which would give a economy to the victim costs entirely. [ 13 ]

There are other signifiers of condemning that are available as opposed to tutelary sentences for illustration in the Criminal Justice Act 1991 was when the Probation Order became a sentence in its ain right this gave an addition in community sentences in 1992 the addition was 18 % , and in 2002 it had increased once more to 25 % . Although these figures did non nevertheless cut down tutelary sentences being given these figures were in add-on to tutelary sentences due to increase in offense. [ 14 ]

To reason it can be clear by the research and surveies that have been taken to turn to the issue, of conditions if tutelary sentences are economical and cost effectual manner of offense bar? Or that by directing captives to imprison for some clip where they can make no injury for the continuance of the sentence is non ever efficient or be consequence and/or if it even prevents offense at all?

There is no uncertainty for certain sorts of captives a tutelary sentence is the lone option, but if there were options made available by the justness system in communities this would give better value for money spent by manner of rehabilitating wrongdoers as opposed to merely directing them to prison. Research has identified that grownup based community strategies are shown to be the best and most likely to be more effectual manner of offense bar in the UK.


Michael Cavadino and James Dignan, ‘The Penal System: An Introduction ( London: Sage, 2007, 4ThursdayEdition )

Aileen Murphie, ‘Measuring the effectivity of prison on sentences in England and Wales ‘ ( hypertext transfer protocol: //

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Roger Matthews, ‘Doing Time An Introduction to the Sociology of Imprisonment ( Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009, 2neodymiumEdition

hypertext transfer protocol: //

hypertext transfer protocol: //merlin/reports/nao/0506/n0506798.pdf

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hypertext transfer protocol: // Briefing.pdf



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