Sentencing Guidelines for Sexual Offences

The Sentencing Council has this week published revised sentencing guidelines for a number of sexual offences.These new guidelines will apply to those sentenced on or after 31 May 2022, and in one case to those sentenced on or after 1 July 2022. Which offences are covered by these changes? The revisions cover: Arranging or facilitating … Continued

Crackdown on waste crime

The Environment Agency Chief Executive, Sir James Bevan, has made a speech on waste crime at an event with Let’s Recycle and the Environmental Services Association. The Executive said that he called waste crime the “new narcotics” six years ago. In the same way, it took some time for the authorities to wake up to … Continued

Smacking children

  The common law has long had a concept of “reasonable chastisement” when it comes to disciplining children. A parent or person in loco parentis may administer reasonable corporate punishment, although concepts of “reasonableness” have narrowed. In 2001 the Court considered the issue of reasonableness and said that standards change as the years pass and … Continued

Facial recognition

Facial Recognition The College of Policing has published a guide to the use of live facial recognition technology. The guide is intended to ensure a consistent approach across forces with a clear legal and ethical framework. The College sets out five aims for the guidance: live facial recognition (LFR) technology should be used in a … Continued

Drug driving crackdown

  The Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, has announced a consultation on the issue of whether those convicted of drug driving should have to undergo rehabilitation.Those convicted of drink driving, as opposed to drug driving, are usually offered the drink driver rehabilitation course. If successfully completed within the set time, the offender is given a reduction … Continued

Speed camera jamming and perverting the course of justice

  Jason Moore recently appealed against his conviction for perverting the course of justice. He had fitted a Laser Star to his van. This device has the capacity to jam a speed meter and act as a parking sensor. A number of years later, he drove the van and passed some roadside speed monitoring equipment. … Continued

Witness intimidation and perverting the course of justice

  The Sentencing Council is an independent body promoting greater consistency in sentencing while maintaining the independence of the judiciary. The Council is responsible for developing sentencing guidelines for use by the judiciary and criminal justice professionals and also monitors their use. New draft guidelines for the offences of witness intimidation and perverting the course … Continued

A journalist and their sources

  A case recently came before the Recorder of London. It was ruled that it was not in the public interest to force a journalist to hand over material that would identify a potential terrorist. The journalist in question was Chris Mullin, and the police applied for an order for him to produce excluded material. … Continued

Unblocking the  backlog in criminal courts

    The House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts has published a report on reducing the backlog in criminal courts. The committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the accounts “showing the appropriation of the sums granted by Parliament to meet the public expenditure, and of such other accounts laid before … Continued

Economic Crime

A Bill is progressing through Parliament to set up a register of overseas entities and their beneficial owners and require overseas entities who own land to register in certain circumstances. It also makes provisions about unexplained wealth orders and sanctions. The Economic Crime (Transparency and Enforcement) Bill has three main objectives: To prevent and combat … Continued

Pre-charge Privacy

In a recent case, the Supreme Court considered the issue of privacy. The Court held that, in general, a person under criminal investigation has, prior to being charged, a reasonable expectation of privacy in respect of information relating to that investigation. Background ZXC (as he was referred to in the case) was a US citizen … Continued

Prison places -Supply to meet demand ?

  A government press release has the heading “thousands of new prison places to rehabilitate offenders and cut crime.” It seems odd when most people would not think of a prison sentence as rehabilitation but rather as a punishment or deterrent. The announcement goes on to say that there will be an “unprecedented” refurbishment and … Continued