Criminal Justice Essay

September 24, 2017 Criminology

The condemnable justness system is one of the really major public service in the society. There are many bureaus who work together under condemnable justness system ; some of these are constabularies. the tribunals. the prison service. the crown prosecution service and the national probation service. The work of these bureaus is over looked by three authorities sections which are the place office. the lawyer general office and the section of constitutional personal businesss.

Sentencing is seen as an of import facet of the condemnable justness system and has been used as a manner of covering with wrongdoers since the initiation of the jurisprudence system as we know it. It is non a simple procedure nevertheless. as many considerations must be taken into history before an appropriate sentence can be imposed. For illustration. should the chief purpose of condemning to be to protect the populace from the wrongdoer or strictly to penalize or rehabilitate the single perpetrating the offense? Furthermore. does penalty of this kind really assist to cut down offense and can the CJS realistically achieve all that it sets out to?

There are a great figure of factors that influence condemning in England and Wales. First and foremost the magistrate examines the earnestness of the offense in relation to other offenses. Therefore. a offense such as slaying would necessitate a much harsher penalty than for shoplifting due to the fact that it has obvious victims and moving in a indulgent mode would do tumult. It must besides be determined whether or non the misdemeanor had any mitigating or exacerbating factors.

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An exacerbating factor is where the offense committed took topographic point against a vulnerable person or group. such as the aged. In add-on. any offense that was planned or involved any kind of arm could be seen as exasperation along with any old strong beliefs that the suspect may keep ( Flood-Page & A ; Mackie. 1998. Morgan & A ; Reiner 2002 ) . A mitigating factor on the other manus. could take to a shorter or more indulgent sentence. due to such factors as mental disablement. fiscal force per unit areas or if no existent injury has been caused to the victim.

The most often applied mitigating factor is the usage of a guilty supplication. If a suspect pleads guilty in a instance so this can take to up to a 3rd being discounted off the initial sentence ( Morgan & A ; Reiner 2002 ) . The earlier in the tribunal proceedings that the supplication is entered can besides hold an influence on how indulgent the justice or magistrate chooses to be. Furthermore. if a suspect shows seeable compunction for what he/she has done so the tribunals are progressively likely to expose some compassion.

In any instance where there is a clear victim so the impact a sentence could hold on them must be investigated. In certain events the victim may hold been badly traumatised by the event ( e. g. colza or a serious assault ) and they would merely see a drawn-out tutelary sentence as justness. However. in at other times. there may hold been small bodily or psychological injury as in the instance of auto offense.

Sentencing does hold certain demands and specific offenses all have a set maximal sentence. The slaying of an single carries an automatic life sentence and person found guilty of burglary could practicably function 14 old ages in prison. nevertheless. a term of this length is seldom imposed.

This helps to put the concluding sentencing duty and besides serves as a warning to a manque wrongdoer about how they would be dealt with should they be caught. In some instances. an offense carries a minimal sentence length. particularly for first offenses. Drivers who cause decease by unsafe driving would be disqualified for at least two old ages and those found driving under the influence of intoxicant would have a 12-month prohibition. The offense act of 1997 initiated a seven-year sentencing for Class A drug covering when prosecuted for the 3rd clip.

Other restrictions can be imposed on sentences. For illustration. a immature individual under the age of 15 can non be placed into a immature wrongdoers institute. Besides imposed are standards which can restrict powers such as the usage of detention. These standards were put in topographic point in 1991 sing grownups.

Further guidelines have been imposed lower down the graduated table in the magistrates’ tribunals. The Magistrates’ Association issued them during the 1970’s particularly when associating to driving offenses. This was done to assist to discontinue incompatibility in condemning between the benches. These guidelines did hold an consequence with certain instances. for illustration. rushing. From 1989 onwards their powers were widened to cover with all offenses within the magistrates tribunals.

Rules such as these illustrate to the prosecuting officer the likely sentence for the mean instance in any one country. They contain a list of factors which can change the earnestness of a typical instance. Although they do take to a greater degree of consistence. sentencers frequently feel that their options are limited and that they are unable to manus out the appropriate duty for the conditions. This was improved slightly by the alterations made in 1993. where as an illustration. the minimal action for existent bodily injury was increased from a community sentence to a period spent in detention.

Another factor that can act upon condemning in England and Wales is the entreaty system. This deals with supplications against a strong belief in the Crown Courts. which takes the signifier of a re-hearing. Merely about 1 % of wrongdoers appeal against a determination one time sentence has been passed as frequently a rough sentence can be allocated. If successful. the suspect stands a opportunity of holding their sentence quashed or at least downgraded.

The guidelines set by the tribunal of entreaty are an of import factor in repairing the duty of a sentence. Important instances that have helped to put these guidelines are Billam in 1986 ( pg 261. cited in Davies. Croall & A ; Tyrer 1998 ) . where it was determined that colza should instantly be set a tutelary sentence and farther aggravating issues could ask a longer clip spent in detention. ( Davies at al. 2005 )

Unfortunately. the entreaty tribunals are merely concerned with serious instances that would affect a prison sentence. Due to this. short or non-custodial footings are non considered. The Sentencing Advisory Panel was created to assist condemning guidelines to develop a systematic attack ( Crime and Disorder Act. 1998 ) .

It is universally agreed that imprisonment can hold serious and detrimental effects on certain types of people. This is peculiarly applicable to the immature. Judges and magistrates are at autonomy to take this into history and strike the right balance for all involved. It is recognised that immature people sometimes lack adulthood and can non be tried under the same conditions as grownups. which could be potentially detrimental.

In some instances the culprit of a offense may endure from mental disablements and should hence be treated in a different mode from a regular person. They may hold been a past victim themselves or be in such a province where they are incognizant of the offense that they have committed. These factors are frequently used in extenuation and this may take to deductions with respects to intervention and farther hazard to the populace. In some instances the person would be better served by being given societal support instead than imprisonment. which could take to farther jobs.

In decision it can be said that there are many factors that can hold an influence on condemning in England and Wales. It is of import to look at both the process for instances in general and for those that are more specific in nature to genuinely understand why determinations are made. Unfortunately. it is hard to determine whether or non personal factors such as ethnicity. gender. and socio-economic position have any bearing on the penalties that are hence handed out.


Davies. Croall & A ; Tyrer. Criminal Justice: An debut to the Criminal Justice System in England and Wales ( 2nd ed. ) . London and New York: Longman. 1998.

Home Office ( 1998 ) . Crime and Disorder Act 1998. available from hypertext transfer protocol: //www. hmso. gov. uk/acts/acts1998/19980037. htm

Morgan. R. ( 2002 ) ‘Imprisonment’ in Maguire. M. et Al ( eds. ) The Oxford Handbook Of Criminology. 3rd edition. Clarenden.

Davies. M. at Al. ( 2005 ) . Condemnable Justice. 3rd Edition

Padfield. N. ( 2003 ) . Text and Materials on the Criminal Justice Process. 3rd Edition

Flood-Page. C. et Al. ( 2000 ) Youth Crime Findingss from the 1998/1999 Youth Lifestyles Survey. London. HMSO. hypertext transfer protocol: //www. homeoffice. gov. uk/rds/hors209. pdf


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