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Historical Sexual Offences (Pardons and Disregards) (Scotland) Act 2018

Section 13 – Application of the Act to conduct dealt with otherwise than by prosecution

46.Section 13 makes provision with regards conduct that was dealt with by means of an alternative to prosecution.

47.Section 13(2) provides that references to a “conviction” and to a person being “convicted”, or to a sentence, include references to, or a person being given, an alternative to prosecution.

48.Section 13(3) provides that an alternative to prosecution includes a warning given by a constable or procurator fiscal, the acceptance of a conditional offer of a fixed penalty under section 302 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995, or the acceptance of an offer made by a procurator fiscal to do anything else (e.g. undertake an activity, treatment or receive services) as an alternative to prosecution for an alleged offence.

49.Section 13(4) provides that where a child has been referred to a children’s hearing on offence grounds and that ground has been established or accepted in such proceedings, that is to be treated for the purpose of this Act as a conviction; and that any disposal of such a case by a children’s hearing is to be treated as a sentence.

50.These provisions ensure that matters which are not convictions before a criminal court but which can show up on a disclosure check as instances of offending behaviour are encompassed within the pardon and disregard scheme.

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