HC Deb 18 March 2003 vol 401 cc704-5W
Kevin Brennan

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the number of children and young people who will be sentenced annually under each of the new proposals in the Criminal Justice Bill to(a) detention for life, (b) detention for public protection and (c) extended sentences. [103077]

Hilary Benn

The Criminal Justice Bill provides new mandatory sentences for offenders who commit a specified violent or sexual offence and who, in the opinion of the court, present a serious risk to members of the public of serious harm commissioned by the offender of further specified offences.

Relevant juveniles convicted of an offence which carries a maximum penalty of detention for life under section 91 of the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000, will receive detention for life under section 91.

Those convicted of a serious specified offence which does not fall within this category, will receive either a sentence of detention for public protection or an extended sentence.

Those convicted of a specified offence which is not a serious offence, will be given an extended sentence.

The provisions aim to protect the public from the very small minority of juveniles who present a serious risk and to enable those offenders to be detained until their risk has been reduced. We anticipate their being used infrequently. We estimate that under them around 30 juveniles a year are likely to receive detention for life, around 10 the extended sentence and one or two detention for public protection.