Legal Updates archives for March 2015

Youth Conditional Caution

March 27, 2015

Children aged 10 – 17 years old can be given a youth conditional caution if they admit a criminal offence.

Youth conditional cautions are a caution with one or more conditions attached. If a child does not keep to the conditions they could be prosecuted for the original offence.

A child must have an appropriate adult if they are given a youth conditional caution (unlike adults they do not consent to receiving a youth caution).

All children who receive youth conditional cautions will have been referred to the Youth Offending Team (YOT).

A youth conditional caution remains on a child’s criminal record. It is considered spent but will appear on an enhanced criminal record check (Disclosure and Barring Service check).

Youth Caution

March 27, 2015

Children aged 10 – 17 years old can be given a youth caution if they admit a criminal offence.

HMIC Report: Vulnerable People in Custody

March 19, 2015

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) published a report last week on the welfare of vulnerable people in custody. Among other things, the report concluded that vulnerable children “need care, not custody”

Out of Court Disposal (OOCD)

March 19, 2015

Children who commit less serious offences and are at low risk of reoffending can be offered alternatives to being charged with criminal offences.

Youth Offending Team (YOT)

March 18, 2015

Each local authority has a youth offending team (YOT) who are a team of people who work with children to prevent them offending or re-offending.

Turning 18 between conviction and sentence

March 14, 2015

R v Dennis Obasi [2014] EWCA Crim 581

The Court of Appeal confirmed that the relevant age for the purpose of sentencing is the age at the date of conviction. Where a young person is 17 at the date of conviction and 18 at the time of sentence the ‘relevant age’ for the purpose of sentencing is 17.

Out of Court Disposals need to be simplified

March 13, 2015

Home Affairs Select Committee Report on Out of Court Disposals (3 March 2015)

This report highlights the lack of consistency in administering out of court disposals (OOCDs). The report recommends simplifying the guidance to police officers, placing the guidance on a statutory footing and introducing scrutiny panels to avoid a postcode lottery.

Defence of ‘loss of control’

March 13, 2015

R v Mustafa Gurpinar, R v Nii-Azu Kojo-Smith & Another [2015] EWCA Crim 178

The Court of Appeal considered the defence of loss of control in the appeals of two young offenders (G and K) who appealed against their convictions for murder. Both appeals were refused.

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