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Sentencing Act 2020

Changes over time for: Section 230

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230Threshold for imposing discretionary custodial sentenceE+W

(1)Subsection (2) applies where a person is convicted of an offence which is punishable with a custodial sentence.

This is subject to subsection (3).

(2)The court must not pass a custodial sentence unless it is of the opinion that—

(a)the offence, or

(b)the combination of the offence and one or more offences associated with it,

was so serious that neither a fine alone nor a community sentence can be justified for the offence.

Threshold generally not applicable where mandatory sentence requirement applies

(3)This section does not apply if the offence is one in relation to which a mandatory sentence requirement applies (see section 399), except as provided in sections 273(4) and 283(4) (pre-condition for life sentence for second listed offence).

Exceptions to subsection (2) relating to community sentences

(4)Nothing in subsection (2) prevents the court from passing a custodial sentence on the offender if the offender fails to express willingness to comply with a requirement—

(a)which the court proposes to include in a community order, but

(b)which may be included only if the offender expresses willingness to comply with it.

(5)Subsection (2) is also subject to—

(a)paragraph 11(3) of Schedule 7 (power to impose custodial sentence in case involving wilful and persistent breach of youth rehabilitation order with intensive supervision and surveillance);

(b)paragraph 22(5)(b) of Schedule 9 (power to deal with offender who does not express willingness to comply with amended drug rehabilitation requirement);

(c)paragraph 10(9) of Schedule 10 (power of magistrates' court to impose custodial sentence following wilful and persistent breach of community order);

(d)paragraph 11(6) of that Schedule (corresponding power of Crown Court);

(e)paragraph 18(9)(b) of that Schedule (power to deal with offender who does not express willingness to comply with amended treatment requirement).

Procedure for forming opinion

(6)In forming its opinion for the purposes of subsection (2), the court must take into account all the information that is available to it about the circumstances of the offence, or of it and the associated or offence or offences, including any aggravating or mitigating factors.

(7)The pre-sentence report requirements (see section 30) apply to the court in relation to forming that opinion.

(8)See also—

(a)section 77(2) (effect of mitigation: community sentence not precluded even if threshold for custodial sentence met);

(b)section 232 (additional requirements for offender suffering from mental disorder).

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S. 230(2) excluded by 2000 c. 6, Sch. 5 para. 2(5)(b) (as amended (1.12.2020) by Sentencing Act 2020 (c. 17), s. 416(1), Sch. 24 para. 170(4) (with Sch. 24 para. 447, Sch. 27); S.I. 2020/1236, reg. 2)

C2S. 230(2) excluded by 2000 c. 6, Sch. 5 para. 3(3)(b) (as amended (1.12.2020) by Sentencing Act 2020 (c. 17), s. 416(1), Sch. 24 para. 170(4) (with Sch. 24 para. 447, Sch. 27); S.I. 2020/1236, reg. 2)

Commencement Information

I1S. 230 in force at 1.12.2020 by S.I. 2020/1236, reg. 2

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