Commentary on Sections

Section 7: Minimum sentence for offence under section 1 or 2

Section 7 sets out that the courts must sentence adult offenders convicted of an offence of human trafficking or slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour to a minimum of two years in prison (with or without a fine) unless exceptional circumstances apply.  Subsections (3) and (4) require that if exceptional circumstances apply that justify either a lower sentence or a suspended sentence, the court must state these in open court and the reasons must be recorded by the Chief Clerk.  Subsection (5) defines a custodial sentence as excluding a suspended sentence.  Subsections (6) to (8) enact a number of consequential amendments to other legislation relating to the sentencing framework.