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Sentencing guidelines far advanced, says Justice Hibbert

Published:Wednesday | January 7, 2015 | 2:37 PM

Complaints about disparity in sentencing for similar offences will soon be at an end.

Speaking at today’s opening of the Hilary Session of the Home Circuit Court, Justice Lloyd Hibbert, disclosed that work is far advanced on developing sentencing guidelines.

Justice Hibbert said if accused persons know in advance what sentence they will get if they plead guilty to an offence, then matters will be shortened.

He said the committee developing the sentencing guidelines is being chaired by Court of Appeal judge Justice Dennis Morrison.

In his response, attorney-at-law, Peter Champagnie, who spoke on behalf of the private bar, welcomed the news of the impending sentencing guidelines.

Speaking with our news centre following the ceremony, Champagnie said sentencing guidelines will help to reduce the backlog of cases which are before the court.

The attorney pointed out that many accused persons express reservations about pleading guilty because of the uncertainty in sentencing guidelines.

Meanwhile, Champagnie says he is looking forward to the passage of amendments to the Evidence Act which will allow plea bargaining as well as giving evidence via video link.


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