Draft Sentencing Guideline: overarching principles-sentencing youths - Justice Committee Contents


1.  The Justice Select Committee receives draft sentencing guidelines produced by the Sentencing Guidelines Council for consideration. The Committee usually provides comments on draft guidelines to the Sentencing Guidelines Council in the form of a letter, published on our website; where we consider that a draft guideline raises major issues we report to the House.

2.  The draft sentencing guideline Overarching principles-sentencing youths is a crucial sentencing guideline. It fills a critical gap, setting out for youth courts the basis upon which they should sentence offenders under the age of 18. Youth courts have not previously had sentencing guidelines setting out such principles. We therefore wish to draw the House's attention to this guideline, the evidence received and our comments to the Sentencing Guidelines Council.

3.  We took oral evidence on this topic from the Standing Committee for Youth Justice, the Children's Rights Alliance for England, the Youth Justice Board, the Magistrates' Association, Barnardo's and Nacro in addition to receiving a variety of written evidence (see list at page 8). We would like to thank all those who submitted written material or gave oral evidence.

4.  Our evidence on this draft sentencing guideline highlighted key areas in relation to youth justice deserving of further scrutiny, such as the use of remand and provisions for offenders aged 18-24. We will consider how to pursue these areas further in our work.

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