Sex Offender Prison Sentences At 10-Year High

A new report released today has revealed the prison sentences given to sex offenders has reached a 10-year high.

The Criminal Justice System Statistics Quarterly shows that sex offenders are now sentenced on average to more than five years in prison – an increase of 4.5 months in the past year alone.

A total of 6,402 sex offenders were convicted in the latest year, an increase of 10% on the previous 12 months. That means that as well as sentences being longer, the number of offenders convicted was the highest it has been in a decade.

Justice Minister Andrew Selous said: "These figures show sex offenders are receiving harsher punishment than ever before for their appalling crimes. Longer sentences will be welcomed by victims, who deserve to know that those who commit these sickening acts are properly held to account."

The statistics also show that in all offence categories, serious offenders are more likely to go straight to prison than at any point in the last 10 years. 27% of people convicted of an indictable offence received an immediate custodial sentence, up from 24% in the 12 months ending March 2010.

The average custodial sentence length for all indictable offences has increased to 18.7 months in March 2015, up from 16.5 months in the 12 months ending March 2010.

The proportion of offenders sentenced to a community sentence for an indictable offence has decreased since the 12 months ending March 2009, from 33% to 20% in the latest year.

In the latest year, there was also a 21% drop in the use of out-of-court disposals, which include cautions, Penalty Notices for Disorder, and cannabis and khat warnings.


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