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Sentence Reductions for a Guilty Plea in England and Wales: Exploring New Empirical Trends

Sentence Reductions for a Guilty Plea in England and Wales: Exploring New Empirical Trends Although most jurisdictions award sentence discounts to defendants who plead guilty, the exact magnitude of reductions awarded, and the factors determining the levels of reduction, remain underresearched. In addition, the limited research conducted to date in England and Wales has drawn on data sources that prevent the researcher from excluding the effect of factors correlated with the plea. This article reports original findings from a new sentencing database that draws its data directly from the sentencing judge. This jurisdiction is interesting also because courts must follow a sentencing guideline that contains specific recommendations regarding the appropriate discount. Analyses reveal that the plea‐based discounts are more modest than reported by previous researchers. In addition, the data reveal a significant degree of judicial compliance with the guideline, although some departures from the guideline are identified and discussed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Empirical Legal Studies Wiley

Sentence Reductions for a Guilty Plea in England and Wales: Exploring New Empirical Trends

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References (25)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2015 Cornell Law School and Wiley Subscription Services, Inc
ISSN
1740-1453
eISSN
1740-1461
DOI
10.1111/jels.12069
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Although most jurisdictions award sentence discounts to defendants who plead guilty, the exact magnitude of reductions awarded, and the factors determining the levels of reduction, remain underresearched. In addition, the limited research conducted to date in England and Wales has drawn on data sources that prevent the researcher from excluding the effect of factors correlated with the plea. This article reports original findings from a new sentencing database that draws its data directly from the sentencing judge. This jurisdiction is interesting also because courts must follow a sentencing guideline that contains specific recommendations regarding the appropriate discount. Analyses reveal that the plea‐based discounts are more modest than reported by previous researchers. In addition, the data reveal a significant degree of judicial compliance with the guideline, although some departures from the guideline are identified and discussed.

Journal

Journal of Empirical Legal StudiesWiley

Published: Jun 1, 2015

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