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Criminal Justice Act 1972

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

14Restriction on imprisonment of persons who have not previously served prison sentences

(1)A court shall not pass sentence of imprisonment on a person who has attained the age of twenty-one and has not previously been sentenced to imprisonment unless the court is of opinion that no other method of dealing with him is appropriate ; and for the purpose of determining whether any other method of dealing with any such person is appropriate the court shall obtain and consider information about the circumstances, and shall take into account any information before the court which is relevant to his character and his physical and mental condition.

(2)Where a magistrates' court sentences to imprisonment any such person as is mentioned in subsection (1) of this section, the court shall state the reason for its opinion that no other method of dealing with him is appropriate, and cause that reason to be specified in the warrant of commitment and to be entered in the register.

(3)In this section—

  • " previously sentenced to imprisonment" means previously sentenced to imprisonment by a court in any part of the United Kingdom, but for the purposes of this definition a sentence of imprisonment which has been suspended and which has not taken effect under section 40 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967 or under section 19 of the Treatment of Offenders Act (Northern Ireland) 1968 shall be disregarded ;

  • " the register " has the same meaning as in the Magistrates' Courts Act 1952; and for the purposes of this section, the age of a person shall be deemed to be that which it appears to file court to be after considering any available evidence.

(4)Subsection (1) of this section does not affect the power of a court to pass sentence on any person for an offence the sentence for which is fixed by law.

(5)The First Offenders Act 1958 shall cease to have effect.

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