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There are two types of cases that are entertained by courts as civil courts and criminal courts. Criminal courts are established specifically for criminal crimes or cases regarding this. Judges presented in the court have the duty of hearing all the matters, facts related to the case and providing appropriate punishment to the accused person. It is the responsibility of the judge to provide fair justice to everyone presented in court. Judges and magistrates play important role in courts under proceedings. Any case in the UK comes to court after the decision made by the crown prosecution service. In the court, the magistrate hears and entertains any case by setting up a panel and all presented evidence is considered by that panel after that decision is to be made for guilt or innocence. For serious types of offences, the district judge or circuit judge in the crown court will consider the evidence. If there is any heinous offence is committed that is to be here by a high court judge (Almond, et. Al., 2021).
In any case, the accused person is arrested and proceedings related to trial are initiated. After the commencing of the trial procedure, it is to be ensured by the judge that all parties are provided sufficient opportunity for presenting their statements and views regarding their case with a fair view. In the whole proceeding of trial judge plays an important role and ensuring that all proceedings are conducted according to the proper rules, procedures, relevant law. during the trial, judges consider the admissible evidence regarding the case and properly record them. After that judge collects all evidence (Amankwaa and McCartney, 2018). The judge prepared every charge in the case according to law and prosecution must be implemented according to that. After this, all evidence and recorded notes are presented with some main points by judge, strengths, and weakness of every side of arguments are presented for a better decision. Then judge provides some directions about the duties of the jury before they leave the deliberation room to make the verdict regarding the disputed case.
Criminal defence service is a provider of legal aid service to those persons who are unable to get legal services whenever they needed. This system helps many people. In the absence of this system, unfair dealing can be done as there is no value of the defence side and consider only the prosecution party in court. It leads to inequality between parties. But after introducing this system there is no inequality between parties and proper legal aid service is provided to the defence party. It runs by the legal service commission and also has some objectives.
There are some objectives of sentencing in the criminal court as punishment, the reduction of crime, reform, and rehabilitation, the protection of the public, reprimanding of offenders. Many misconceptions are also set out by people regarding the sentencing. Before deciding about sentencing some factors need to be considered.
There are some misconceptions regarding sentencing:
a misconception detailed out as sentence can only be passed if the person is found guilty during the trial or himself confess guilty for any offence but in the case, an accused person can not be found guilty then there is no punishment for him and generally, some orders are made against acquitted defendants (Campana and Varese, 2018).
These factors are described as
the sentence is considered according to the offence committed by the accused and the limit or kind of punishment can also be decided according to the offence. It is considered whether the punishment is to be imprisonable or non-imprisonable, courts also have a wide area for providing the punishment.
A guilty plea
It's depended upon the accused that if pleads guilty or not for any offence in court. If the accused pleads guilty then it is considered that when he pleads guilty because an early plead guilty can lessen the punishment by up to one third (Craig and De Búrca 2020).
The circumstances of the offence
Before sentencing for any offence, it is required to consider the level of culpability and harm by the magistrate and judge. Those factors which make the offence more serious and less serious must also be considered. Every case has different nature and factors. If any serious impact is found on the victim, then it can be said that there is major loss or injury to the victim person. It can also be considered that some factors as the use of a weapon, targeting vulnerable victims, and providing drugs (Custer 2018).
Some mitigating circumstances reduce the impact of offence as less serious. These factors less affect the victim person.
The circumstances of the offender
Circumstances of the offender involve the age of the offender and his record regarding if any offence was committed by him. This provides the personal details of the offender as debt problem and defendant's attitude towards any offence. In various cases, a litigant will have seen a post-trial agent before condemning where the offence and the respondent's conditions will have been examined between them. The post-trial agent will then, at that point, produce a pre-sentence report for the court to aid the condemning system (Fargues, 2017).
There are some misconceptions regarding sentencing:
a misconception detailed out as sentence can only be passed if the person is found guilty during the trial or himself confess guilty for any offence but in the case, an accused person can not be found guilty then there is no punishment for him and generally, some orders are made against acquitted defendants. Many other misconceptions also exist (Fawei, et. Al., 2018).
There are some theories propounded by committees and others regarding punishment in criminal law. sentencing is a very complex task because in earlier times the sentence was provided in the proportion of the offence but with modern time many things are changed and some theories are introduced for it. There are many kinds of punishment that can be confronted by criminals. To understand punishments some theories as deterrent theory, retributive, reformative, and preventive theories are required to understand. Some theories can be understood as;
Retributive theory: this theory was prescribed by professor hart. It is a more ancient kind of punishment. According to this person can be punished only when he made a wrongful act in the eyes of law. a person should be punished according to his crime and have full knowledge about the punishment (Grayson, ).
Deterrent theory: this theory mainly focuses on providing evil in the return of evil done by the offender. This theory can be divided into specific deterrence and general deterrence. under this punishment is provided with the motive of creating fear in the mind of the offender to not repeat the crime.
Preventive theory: in this theory, restraint is used as if the offender repeats any crime, then he should be punished with death imprisonment. Its motive is to protect society from criminals.
Reformative theory: this theory is extracted from positive theory as the focal point of crime is positive thinking. According to this theory, offenders are reformed not punished. Reformation opportunity is provided to them to rectify their behaviour. So, under this punishment is not provided to offenders rather rehabilitation facility is provided to them. this theory focuses on reforming criminals into good citizens (Jones and Kawalek, 2019).
aims of sentencing
sentencing is the powerful process of providing fair justice to any person in society. It should be according to society and its expectations. Its main aim is to protect society from offenders and the bad impacts of their committed offences (Lock 2017).
there are many reasons behind the punishing of offenders. It involves discouraging offenders, preventing them from committing any further crime, providing them rehabilitation facilities. Another aim is to show society's disapproval of the crime. In the retributive theory of punishment, the offender provides the payback for the offence. Another aim of punishment is to reparation means compensating the victim or plaintiff for that offender is ordered to pay. Generally, it is the fear of being caught in the mind of a criminal but there is a very low rate of detection of a criminal person, the threat of unpleasant penalty and if any criminal is caught, he attempts to escape from there. There is very less value of general deterrent because offenders are hardly deterred by serious penalties (McNamara, et. Al., 2021).
Rehabilitation is also having some objectives as reforming the accused person and provide him with an opportunity to be a good citizen, facility of rehabilitation is also provided to him. The main aim of rehabilitation is to provide a chance to the offender for changes his behaviour in a good manner with living in society. \
Kinds of sentences for children and juveniles
There are various types of sentences for children and juveniles under criminal law as:
It is similar to adult criminals. This sentencing is provided for the least serious sentence and child or juvenile offenders can be released from the court there will be no further proceedings for their committed crime. But the court also provides them with a criminal record. Discharge is of two types as absolute discharge and conditional discharge. In the absolute discharge, the court considers not to impose any further punishment because in their view presenting in the court proceeding is enough punishment for a child or juvenile person (Murphy and Hine, 2019).
Fine for the adult person should be according to the offence but for the child or young it should be according to their capacity. In case if any child or juvenile is under the age of 16 years then it is the responsibility of the parents or guardian to pay the fine (Page, et. al., 2019).
Under this, a youth offender panel is to be made with two members of the local community and an advisor from the youth offending team. according to this agreement with contracts, containing commitments. The main objective of this sentence is to protect the other members from harm that offenders caused and conduct some activities for their offending behaviour. This order must be imposed on children or juveniles when they plead guilty to their offence.
Youth rehabilitation orders
It is also called a community sentence. Under this, some requirements must be complied with by offenders if applied to them as curfew, supervision, unpaid work, electronic monitoring, treatment of physical or mental health.
The custodial rehabilitation sentence is to be provided in case more serious offences are committed by children or young persons. Under this proper training and education is to be provided to the offender so they do not commit the offence again. This sentence can be spent in safe children's homes, secure training centres, and young offenders’ institutions. Detention and training can be ordered by youth court to persons between the age of 12 to 17 (Theil, 2019).
Training and detention can also be ordered in the crown court. For more serious offenses the longer-term detention can be imposed (Pilich, 2017).
Almond, L., McManus, M., Bal, A., O’Brien, F., Rainbow, L. and Webb, M., 2021. Assisting the investigation of stranger rapes: Predicting the criminal record of UK stranger rapists from their crime scene behaviours. Journal of interpersonal violence, 36(3-4), pp.NP2005-2028NP.
Amankwaa, A.O. and McCartney, C., 2018. The UK national DNA database: implementation of the protection of freedoms act 2012. Forensic science international, 284, pp.117-128.
Campana, P. and Varese, F., 2018. Organized crime in the United Kingdom: Illegal governance of markets and communities. The British Journal of Criminology, 58(6), pp.1381-1400.
Craig, P. and De Búrca, G., 2020. EU Law: Text, Cases, and Materials UK Version. Oxford University Press, USA.
Custer, B.D., 2018. Applying to university with criminal convictions: A comparative study of admissions policies in the United States and United Kingdom. Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 40(3), pp.239-255.
Fargues, É., 2017. The revival of citizenship deprivation in France and the UK as an instance of citizenship renationalisation. Citizenship Studies, 21(8), pp.984-998.
Fawei, B., Pan, J.Z., Kollingbaum, M. and Wyner, A.Z., 2018, November. A methodology for a criminal law and procedure ontology for legal question answering. In Joint International Semantic Technology Conference (pp. 198-214). Springer, Cham.
Grayson, K., Immigration detention and Immigration Removal Centres in the UK: criminal procedure that punishes detainees and stigmatises migrant community.
Jones, E. and Kawalek, A., 2019. Dissolving the stiff upper lip: Opportunities and challenges for the mainstreaming of therapeutic jurisprudence in the United Kingdom. International journal of law and psychiatry, 63, pp.76-84.
Lock, T., 2017. Human rights law in the UK after Brexit. Edinburgh School of Law Research Paper, (2017/17).
McNamara, L., Quilter, J., Hogg, R., Loughnan, A., Douglas, H., Brown, D. and Farmer, L., 2021. Understanding processes of criminalisation: Insights from an Australian study of criminal law-making. Criminology & Criminal Justice, 21(3), pp.387-407.
Murphy, A. and Hine, B., 2019. Investigating the demographic and attitudinal predictors of rape myth acceptance in UK Police officers: developing an evidence-base for training and professional development. Psychology, Crime & Law, 25(1), pp.69-89.
Page, H., Horsman, G., Sarna, A. and Foster, J., 2019. A review of quality procedures in the UK forensic sciences: What can the field of digital forensics learn?. Science & justice, 59(1), pp.83-92.
Pilich, M., 2017. Brexit and EU private international law: May the UK stay in?. Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, 24(3), pp.382-398.
Theil, S., 2019. The Online Harms White Paper: comparing the UK and German approaches to regulation. Journal of Media Law, 11(1), pp.41-51.
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