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The Criminal Justice (Northern Ireland) Order 1996


This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Community service orders in respect of convicted persons

13.—(1) Subject to paragraph (4), where a person of or over 16 years of age is convicted of an offence punishable with imprisonment (not being an offence the sentence for which is fixed by law), the court by or before which he is convicted may, make a community service order, that is to say, an order requiring him to perform unpaid work in accordance with the subsequent provisions of this Part.

(2) The number of hours which a person may be required to work under a community service order shall be specified in the order and shall be in the aggregate—

(a)not less than 40; and

(b)not more than 240.

(3) The reference in paragraph (1) to an offence punishable with imprisonment shall be construed without regard to any prohibition or restriction imposed by or under any statutory provision on the imprisonment of persons under 21 years of age.

(4) A court shall not make a community service order in respect of any offender unless the offender consents and the court is satisfied—

(a)after hearing (if the court thinks it necessary) a probation officer, that the offender is a suitable person to perform work under such an order; and

(b)that provision can be made by the Probation Board for him to do so.

(5) Where a court makes community service orders in respect of 2 or more offences of which the offender has been convicted by or before the court, the court may direct that the hours of work specified in any of those orders shall be concurrent with or additional to those specified in any other of those orders, but so that the total number of hours which are not concurrent shall not exceed the maximum specified in paragraph (2)(b).

(6) A community service order shall specify the petty sessions district in which the offender resides or will reside; and the functions conferred by the subsequent provisions of this Part on the relevant officer shall be discharged by a probation officer selected under arrangements made by the Probation Board or a person appointed by it for the purposes of this paragraph.

(7) Before making a community service order the court shall—

(a)state in open court that it is of the opinion that Article 8(1) applies and why it is of that opinion; and

(b)explain to the offender in ordinary language—

(i)why it is making a community service order;

(ii)the effect of the order (including the requirements of the order as specified in Article 14);

(iii)the consequences which may follow under Part II of Schedule 2 if he fails to comply with any of the requirements of the order; and

(iv)that the court has under Schedule 2 power to review the order on the application either of the offender or of the relevant officer.

(8) The court by which a community service order is made shall forthwith give copies of the order to a probation officer assigned to the court and he shall give a copy to the offender and to the relevant officer; and the court shall, except where it is itself a magistrates' court acting for the petty sessions district specified in the order, send to the clerk of petty sessions for the petty sessions district specified in the order a copy of the order, together with such documents and information relating to the case as it considers likely to be of assistance to a court acting for that district in exercising its functions in relation to the order.

(9) A magistrates' court shall cause a reason stated by it under paragraph (7) to be entered in the Order Book.

(10) The Secretary of State may by order direct that paragraph (2) fl shall be amended by substituting for the maximum number of hours for the time being specified in sub-paragraph (b) of that paragraph such number of hours as may be specified in the order.

(11) Nothing in paragraph (1) shall be construed as preventing a court which makes a community service order in respect of any offence from making an order for costs against, or imposing any disqualification on, the offender or from making in respect of the offence an order under Article 11 or 14 of the [1994 NI 15.] Criminal Justice (Northern Ireland) Order 1994 (power to deprive offenders of property used, or intended for use, for purposes of crime and compensation orders) or under Article 8 of the [1980 NI 6.] Criminal Justice (Northern Ireland) Order 1980 (driving disqualification where vehicle used for purposes of crime) or under section 27 of the [1969 c. 16 (N.I.).] Theft Act (Northern Ireland) 1969 (restitution orders).

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