Nevertheless, to the prevalence of handbag robbery in

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Nevertheless, deterrence as an aim of punishment is still
in the minds of sentencers and the sentencing council, in the 2015 case of R v Brooke (Simon)1 an offender’s 63
months sentence for attempted robbery was upheld on appeal because he had intentionally
targeted a vulnerable victim, who suffered from cerebral palsy, and the
psychological effects on the victim had been severe. The Appeal court
specifically said that the judge was entitled to call for a deterrent sentence
upon reviewing the circumstances of the case. In another case cited R v Thames Water Utilities Ltd,2
the courts commented that fines for serious environmental offences by large
corporations should rise and one factor was clearly deterrence. The issue of
whether deterrence should be used as a sentencing aim is clouded by the fact
that the greater number is always prioritized. In R v Oosthuizen3 the judge at first
instance decided to impose a deterrent sentence due to the prevalence of
handbag robbery in the area, as women in Guilford were entitled to feel safe on
the streets. However, the courts stated that the deterrent element in a
sentence must be supported by national statistics. At prima facie, this
decision would appear inequitable as the Guilford women would be discounted,
because they are a minority, it would suggest that their issues are unimportantly
balanced against the silent majority.

1   R v Brooke (Simon) Court of Appeal (Criminal
Division) (2015) unreported

2 R
v Thames Water Utilities Ltd (2015) EWCA Crim 960

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3 R
v Oosthuizen (2015) All ER (D) 117 (Jul)

Categories: Statistics


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