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Criminal Sentencing: Leniency

Attorney General – in the House of Commons at 9:30 am on 25th February 2016.

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Photo of Rebecca Harris Rebecca Harris Conservative, Castle Point 9:30 am, 25th February 2016

How many times the Law Officers referred a criminal sentence to the Court of Appeal for review on the grounds that it was unduly lenient in the last year.

Photo of Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright The Attorney-General

In the calendar year to 31 December 2015, the Law Officers considered 467 sentences and referred 150 offenders to the Court of Appeal.

Photo of Rebecca Harris Rebecca Harris Conservative, Castle Point

Can the Attorney General confirm that he is fulfilling our manifesto commitment to review the unduly lenient sentences scheme, and will he comment specifically on whether that review will take into account family courts, where it is currently at the discretion of the presiding judge whether to refer up sentences of serious cases of sexual crimes and rape?

Photo of Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright The Attorney-General

The answer to the first part of my hon. Friend’s question is yes, we will fulfil that commitment and, as she knows, we are looking carefully at how best to do so. I will also consider what she has said in relation to matters considered by the youth courts. There are difficulties with including all youth court cases, but we will consider carefully what she has said and see whether there is a way of accommodating it.