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Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 20 — Mandatory life sentences: transitional cases

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              (f)             the fact that the victim was providing a public service or performing

a public duty, and

              (g)             concealment, destruction or dismemberment of the body.

  10       Mitigating factors that may be relevant to the offence of murder include—

              (a)             an intention to cause serious bodily harm rather than to kill,

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              (b)             lack of premeditation,

              (c)             the fact that the offender suffered from any mental disorder or

mental disability which (although not falling within section 2(1) of

the Homicide Act 1957 (c. 11)), lowered his degree of culpability,

              (d)             the fact that the offender was provoked (for example, by prolonged

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stress) in a way not amounting to a defence of provocation,

              (e)             the fact that the offender acted to any extent in self-defence,

              (f)             a belief by the offender that the murder was an act of mercy, and

              (g)             the age of the offender.

  11       Nothing in this Schedule restricts the application of—

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              (a)             section 126(2) (previous convictions),

              (b)             section 126(3) (bail), or

              (c)             section 127 (guilty plea).

Schedule 20

Section 254

 

Mandatory life sentences: transitional cases

20

Interpretation

  1        In this Schedule—

                    “the commencement date” means the day on which section 247 comes

into force;

                    “the early release provisions” means the provisions of section 28(5) to

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(8) of the Crime (Sentences) Act 1997 (c. 43);

                    “existing prisoner” means a person serving one or more mandatory life

sentences passed before the commencement date (whether or not he

is also serving any other sentence);

                    “life sentence” means a sentence of imprisonment for life or custody for

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life passed in England and Wales or by a court-martial outside

England and Wales;

                    “mandatory life sentence” means a life sentence passed in

circumstances where the sentence was fixed by law.

Existing prisoners notified by Secretary of State

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  2        Paragraph 3 applies in relation to any existing prisoner who, in respect of

any mandatory life sentence, has before the commencement date been

notified in writing by the Secretary of State (otherwise than in a notice that

is expressed to be provisional) either—

              (a)             of a minimum period which in the view of the Secretary of State

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should be served before the prisoner’s release on licence, or

 

 

Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 20 — Mandatory life sentences: transitional cases

    293

 

              (b)             that the Secretary of State does not intend that the prisoner should

ever be released on licence.

  3       (1)      On the application of the existing prisoner, the High Court must, in relation

to the mandatory life sentence, either—

              (a)             order that the early release provisions are to apply to him as soon as

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he has served the part of the sentence which is specified in the order,

which in a case falling within paragraph 2(a) must not be greater

than the notified minimum term, or

              (b)             in a case falling within paragraph 2(b), order that the early release

provisions are not to apply to the offender.

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          (2)      In a case falling within paragraph 2(a), no application may be made under

this paragraph after the end of the notified minimum term.

          (3)      Where no application under this paragraph is made in a case falling within

paragraph 2(a), the early release provisions apply to the prisoner in respect

of the sentence as soon as he has served the notified minimum term (or, if he

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has served that term before the commencement date but has not been

released, from the commencement date).

          (4)      In this paragraph “the notified minimum term” means the minimum period

notified as mentioned in paragraph 2(a), or where the prisoner has been so

notified on more than one occasion, the period most recently so notified.

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  4       (1)      In dealing with an application under paragraph 3, the High Court must have

regard to—

              (a)             the seriousness of the offence, or of the combination of the offence

and one or more offences associated with it,

              (b)             where the court is satisfied that, if the prisoner had been sentenced

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to a term of imprisonment, the length of his sentence would have

been treated by section 67 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967 (c. 80) as

being reduced by a particular period, the effect which that section

would have had if he had been sentenced to a term of imprisonment,

and

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              (c)             the length of the notified minimum term or, where a notification

falling within paragraph 2(b) has been given to the prisoner, to the

fact that such a notification has been given.

          (2)      In considering under sub-paragraph (1) the seriousness of the offence, or of

the combination of the offence and one or more offences associated with it,

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the High Court must have regard to—

              (a)             the general principles set out in Schedule 19, and

              (b)             any recommendation made to the Secretary of State by the trial judge

or the Lord Chief Justice as to the minimum term to be served by the

offender before release on licence.

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          (3)      In this paragraph “the notified minimum term” has the same meaning as in

paragraph 3.

Existing prisoners not notified by Secretary of State

  5        Paragraph 6 applies in relation to any existing prisoner who, in respect of

any mandatory life sentence, has not before the commencement date been

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notified as mentioned in paragraph 2(a) or (b) by the Secretary of State.

 

 

Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 20 — Mandatory life sentences: transitional cases

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  6        The Secretary of State must refer the prisoner’s case to the High Court for the

making by the High Court of an order under subsection (2) or (4) of section

247 in relation to the mandatory life sentence.

  7        In considering under subsection (3) or (4) of section 247 the seriousness of an

offence (or the combination of an offence and one or more offences

5

associated with it) in a case referred to the High Court under paragraph 6,

the High Court must have regard not only to the matters mentioned in

subsection (5) of that section but also to any recommendation made to the

Secretary of State by the trial judge or the Lord Chief Justice as to the

minimum term to be served by the offender before release on licence.

10

  8        In dealing with a reference under paragraph 6, the High Court—

              (a)             may not make an order under subsection (2) of section 247 specifying

a part of the sentence which in the opinion of the court is greater than

that which, under the practice followed by the Secretary of State

before December 2002, the Secretary of State would have been likely

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to notify as mentioned in paragraph 2(a), and

              (b)             may not make an order under subsection (4) of section 247 unless the

court is of the opinion that, under the practice followed by the

Secretary of State before December 2002, the Secretary of State would

have been likely to give the prisoner a notification falling within

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paragraph 2(b).

Sentences passed on or after commencement date in respect of offences committed before that

date

  9        Paragraph 10 applies where—

              (a)             on or after the commencement date a court passes a life sentence in

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circumstances where the sentence is fixed by law, and

              (b)             the offence to which the sentence relates was committed before the

commencement date.

  10       The court—

              (a)             may not make an order under subsection (2) of section 247 specifying

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a part of the sentence which in the opinion of the court is greater than

that which, under the practice followed by the Secretary of State

before December 2002, the Secretary of State would have been likely

to notify as mentioned in paragraph 2(a), and

              (b)             may not make an order under subsection (4) of section 247 unless the

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court is of the opinion that, under the practice followed by the

Secretary of State before December 2002, the Secretary of State would

have been likely to give the prisoner a notification falling within

paragraph 2(b).

Proceedings in High Court

40

  11      (1)      An application under paragraph 3 or a reference under paragraph 6 is to be

determined by a single judge of the High Court without an oral hearing.

          (2)      In relation to such an application or reference, any reference to “the court” in

section 247(2) to (5) and Schedule 19 is to be read as a reference to the High

Court.

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Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 20 — Mandatory life sentences: transitional cases

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Giving of reasons

  12      (1)      Where the High Court makes an order under paragraph 3(1)(a) or (b), it

must state in open court, in ordinary language, its reasons for deciding on

the order made.

          (2)      Where the order is an order under paragraph 3(1)(a) specifying a part of the

5

sentence shorter than the notified minimum term the High Court must, in

particular, state its reasons for departing from the notified minimum term.

  13       Where the High Court makes an order under subsection (2) or (4) of section

247 on a reference under paragraph 6, subsection (2) of section 248 does not

apply.

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Right of appeal

  14      (1)      A person who has made an application under paragraph 3 or in respect of

whom a reference has been made under paragraph 6 may with the leave of

the Court of Appeal appeal to the Court of Appeal against the decision of the

High Court on the application or reference.

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          (2)      Section 1(1) of the Administration of Justice Act 1960 (c. 65) (appeal to House

of Lords from decision of High Court in a criminal cause or matter) and

section 18(1)(a) of the Supreme Court Act 1981 (c. 54) (exclusion of appeal

from High Court to Court of Appeal in a criminal cause or matter) do not

apply in relation to a decision to which sub-paragraph (1) applies.

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          (3)      The jurisdiction conferred on the Court of Appeal by this paragraph is to be

exercised by the criminal division of that court.

          (4)      Section 33(3) of the Criminal Appeal Act 1968 (c. 19) (limitation on appeal

from criminal division of Court of Appeal) does not prevent an appeal to the

House of Lords under this paragraph.

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          (5)      In relation to appeals to the Court of Appeal or the House of Lords under

this paragraph, the Secretary of State may make an order containing

provision corresponding to any provision in the Criminal Appeal Act 1968

(subject to any specified modifications).

Review of minimum term on reference by Attorney General

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  15       Section 36 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (c. 33) applies in relation to an

order made by the High Court under paragraph 3(1)(a) as it applies in

relation to an order made by the Crown Court under section 247(2).

Modification of early release provisions

  16      (1)                        In relation to an existing prisoner, section 28 of the Crime (Sentences) Act

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1997 (c. 43) has effect subject to the following modifications.

          (2)                        Any reference to a life prisoner in respect of whom a minimum term order

has been made includes a reference to—

              (a)             an existing prisoner in respect of whom an order under paragraph

3(1)(a) has been made, and

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              (b)             an existing prisoner serving a sentence in respect of which paragraph

3(3) applies.

          (3)                        Any reference to the relevant part of the sentence is to be read—

 

 

Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 21 — Deferment of sentence

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              (a)             in relation to a sentence in respect of which an order under

paragraph 3(1)(a) has been made, as a reference to the part specified

in the order, and

              (b)             in relation to a sentence in respect of which paragraph 3(3) applies,

as a reference to the notified minimum term as defined by paragraph

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3(4).

          (4)                        In subsection (1B) (life prisoner serving two or more sentences), paragraph

(a) is to be read as if it referred to each of the sentences being one—

              (a)             in respect of which a minimum term order or an order under

paragraph 3(1)(a) has been made, or

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              (b)             in respect of which paragraph 3(3) applies.

  17       In section 34(1) of the Crime (Sentences) Act 1997 (c. 43) (interpretation of

Chapter 2 of that Act), in the definition of “life prisoner”, the reference to a

transferred prisoner as defined by section 251 of this Act includes a reference

to an existing prisoner who immediately before the commencement date is

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a transferred life prisoner for the purposes of section 33 of that Act.

Transferred life prisoners

  18       In relation to an existing prisoner who immediately before the

commencement date is a transferred life prisoner for the purposes of section

33 of the Crime (Sentences) Act 1997, this Schedule is to be read as if—

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              (a)             any certificate under subsection (2) of that section were a notification

falling within paragraph 2(a) of this Schedule, and

              (b)             references to any recommendation of the trial judge or the Lord

Chief Justice were omitted.

Schedule 21

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Section 256

 

Deferment of sentence

  1        For sections 1 and 2 of the Sentencing Act (deferment of sentence) there is

substituted—

“Deferment of sentence

       1            Deferment of sentence

30

              (1)             The Crown Court or a magistrates’ court may defer passing sentence

on an offender for the purpose of enabling the court, or any other

court to which it falls to deal with him, to have regard in dealing with

him to—

                    (a)                   his conduct after conviction (including, where appropriate,

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the making by him of reparation for his offence); or

                    (b)                   any change in his circumstances;

            but this is subject to subsections (3) and (4) below.

              (2)             Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) above, the

matters to which the court to which it falls to deal with the offender

40

may have regard by virtue of paragraph (a) of that subsection

 

 

Criminal Justice Bill
Schedule 21 — Deferment of sentence

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include the extent to which the offender has complied with any

requirements imposed under subsection (3)(b) below.

              (3)             The power conferred by subsection (1) above shall be exercisable

only if—

                    (a)                   the offender consents;

5

                    (b)                   the offender undertakes to comply with any requirements as

to his conduct during the period of the deferment that the

court considers it appropriate to impose; and

                    (c)                   the court is satisfied, having regard to the nature of the

offence and the character and circumstances of the offender,

10

that it would be in the interests of justice to exercise the

power.

              (4)             Any deferment under this section shall be until such date as may be

specified by the court, not being more than six months after the date

on which the deferment is announced by the court; and, subject to

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section 1D(3) below, where the passing of sentence has been deferred

under this section it shall not be further so deferred.

              (5)             Where a court has under this section deferred passing sentence on an

offender, it shall forthwith give a copy of the order deferring the

passing of sentence and setting out any requirements imposed under

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subsection (3)(b) above—

                    (a)                   to the offender,

                    (b)                   where an officer of a local probation board has been

appointed to act as a supervisor in relation to him, to that

board, and

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                    (c)                   where a person has been appointed under section 1A(2)(b)

below to act as a supervisor in relation to him, to that person.

              (6)             Notwithstanding any enactment, a court which under this section

defers passing sentence on an offender shall not on the same

occasion remand him.

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              (7)             Where—

                    (a)                   a court which under this section has deferred passing

sentence on an offender proposes to deal with him on the

date originally specified by the court, or

                    (b)                   the offender does not appear on the day so specified,

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                              the court may issue a summons requiring him to appear before the

court at a time and place specified in the summons, or may issue a

warrant to arrest him and bring him before the court at a time and

place specified in the warrant.

              (8)             Nothing in this section or sections 1A to 1D below shall affect—

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                    (a)                   the power of the Crown Court to bind over an offender to

come up for judgment when called upon; or

                    (b)                   the power of any court to defer passing sentence for any

purpose for which it may lawfully do so apart from this

section.

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