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The Purposes of Punishment: How Do Judges Apply a Legislative Statement of Sentencing Purposes?

Citation

Warner, K and Davis, J and Cockburn, H, The Purposes of Punishment: How Do Judges Apply a Legislative Statement of Sentencing Purposes?, Criminal Law Journal, 41 pp. 69-85. ISSN 0314-1160 (2017) [Refereed Article]


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Abstract

Despite abundant academic debate about the justification for criminal punishment, the frequent revisiting of how to deal legislatively with the purposes of a sentence by law reform bodies and some legal analysis of appellate guidance on the purposes of sentence, little attention has been given to judges’ reliance on the purposes of sentence in their sentencing remarks. This article attempts to close this gap by analysing the sentencing remarks in trials obtained for a study of jurors’ views of sentencing in Victoria. Against the backdrop of the Victorian legislation, the article examines the extent to which judges advert to the purposes of sentence in their reasons and how they rank and prioritise the purposes including in cases where there was a statutory requirement to prioritise incapacitation. Explanations for judges’ preferences are suggested including that purposes serve as proxies for statements about the seriousness of the crime.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:law, sentencing, judges
Research Division:Law and Legal Studies
Research Group:Law
Research Field:Law not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Law, Politics and Community Services
Objective Group:Justice and the Law
Objective Field:Justice and the Law not elsewhere classified
Author:Warner, K (Professor Kate Warner)
Author:Cockburn, H (Dr Helen Cockburn)
ID Code:118629
Year Published:2017
Deposited By:Law
Deposited On:2017-07-14
Last Modified:2017-07-18
Downloads:0

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