Professor Ormerod, one of the country’s foremost experts in relation to Criminal Sentencing, had been appointed to look at replacing the existing laws on sentencing with a single Sentencing Code.
The Sentencing Code will essentially be a consolidation of the existing laws which govern sentencing procedure. It aims to bring together elements from the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000, and Parts of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 as well as other Acts. Once enacted and brought into force, it is anticipated that the Sentencing Code will provide the first port of call for laws concerning sentencing procedure.
The Sentencing Code was first published by the Law Commission in November 2018.
In May 2019, the government accepted the main recommendation of the Report to enact both pieces of legislation. In April 2020 the government set out its consideration of the further recommendations for the reform of sentencing law that are set out in the report.
The proposals do not affect the length or type of sentences that can be imposed. The recommendations, are designed to bring greater clarity to the guidelines to enable criminal solicitors and others to better understand the language and procedure. The sentencing code is designed to modernise the law and bring about greater transparency.
Law Commissioner Professor David Ormerod QC said: “Our changes will make sentencing simpler, by getting rid of the need to dust off decades’ old law, cut Court waiting times and help make sure people get the justice they deserve.”