The Scottish sentencing council have voiced that there will be a considerable impact if sentencing guidelines are being introduced that have not properly been tested in Scotland. This comment was made as there is a motion for a debate regarding this matter in Parliament this week.
The chair of the Scottish Sentencing Council, Lady Dorrian has said: “We welcome parliamentary interest in our work, and agree that transparency and consistency in sentencing are vital. In Scotland’s first sentencing guideline, approved by the High Court last year, we set out both concepts as underpinning all sentencing decisions. However, the guideline also notes that treating cases similarly does not mean that they should be dealt with in exactly the same way.”
It was made clear by Lady Dorrian that each case is unique and there will always be variations, giving weight to the particular circumstances of any particular case. In relation to sexual cases specifically Lady Dorrian stated “we would note that this is a wide ranging, sensitive, and complex topic, which will require careful consideration”.