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Armed Forces Act 2006

Order for parent or guardian to enter into recognizance
Section 233: Order for service parent or service guardian to enter into recognizance

463.This section enables, and in some cases requires, the Court Martial or the SCC to exercise powers similar to those conferred on civilian courts by section 150 of the Sentencing Act. These powers can be exercised where a person is convicted of an offence when aged under 18, is a civilian subject to service discipline, and has a parent or guardian who is subject to service law or is a civilian subject to service discipline. The court can ask the parent or guardian to enter into a recognizance to take proper care of the offender and exercise proper control over him. This involves undertaking to pay a specified sum if the offender commits another offence within a specified period. If the parent or guardian unreasonably refuses to enter into a recognizance, the court can fine him.

464.If the offender is under 16 when convicted, the court must exercise these powers if satisfied that this would be desirable in the interests of preventing him from committing more offences, and must state its reasons if it does not do so.

Section 234: Recognizances and fines under section 233: further provision

465.Subsection (1) restricts the amount for which a parent or guardian may be required to enter into a recognizance, and subsection (2) restricts the period for which he may be entered to do so.

466.Subsection (3) requires the court to take into account the parent or guardian’s means, in the same way as when imposing a fine (see section 249).

467.If the court has also passed an overseas community order on the offender, subsection (4) allows the recognizance to require his parent or guardian to ensure that he complies with that order.

468.Subsection (5) applies other provisions of the Act, relating to fines imposed on offenders, to a fine imposed on a parent or guardian for refusing to enter into a recognizance.

Section 235: Recognizances: appeals, variation and revocation

469.Subsections (1) and (2) enable a parent or guardian to appeal against an order requiring him to enter into a recognizance or to pay a fine for refusing to do so.

470.Subsection (4) enables the Court Martial to vary or revoke such an order.

Section 236: Forfeiture of recognizance

471.This section allows a recognizance to be forfeited if the offender commits another service offence during the period of the recognizance. Provided that the parent or guardian is still subject to service law or a civilian subject to service discipline, the Court Martial or the SCC on convicting the offender of the new offence can require the parent or guardian to pay any sum up to the full amount of the recognizance, or remit that amount.

472.When declaring that a recognizance is to be forfeited, the court can make an order under section 251 allowing the parent or guardian time to pay, or directing that he pay in instalments.

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