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Previous Convictions at Sentencing: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives

Edited by: Julian V Roberts, Andrew von Hirsch

ISBN13: 9781849466844
Published: July 2014
Publisher: Hart Publishing
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback (Hardback in 2010)
Price: £18.00
Hardback edition , ISBN13 9781849460422



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This latest volume in the Penal Theory and Penal Ethics series addresses one of the oldest and most contested questions in the field of criminal sentencing: should an offender's previous convictions affect the sentence, and how?

This question provokes a series of others: Is it possible to justify a discount for first offenders within a retributive sentencing framework? How should previous convictions enter into the sentencing equation? At what point should prior misconduct cease to count for the purposes of fresh sentencing? Should similar previous convictions count more than convictions unrelated to the current offence? Statutory sentencing regimes around the world incorporate provisions which mandate harsher treatment of repeat offenders.

Although there is an extensive literature on the definition and use of criminal history information, the emphasis here, as befits a volume in the series, is on the theoretical and normative aspects of considering previous convictions at sentencing.

Several authors explore the theory underlying the practice of mitigating the punishments for first offenders, while others put forth arguments for enhancing sentences for recidivists. The practice of sentencing repeat offenders in two jurisdictions (England and Wales, and Sweden) is also examined in detail.

Subjects:
Criminal Law
Contents:
Acknowledgements
Preface
Contributing Authors
1. Proportionality and the Progressive Loss of Mitigation: Some Further Reflections
Andrew von Hirsch
2. First-Offender Sentencing Discounts: Exploring the Justifi cations
Julian V Roberts
3. Recidivism, Retributivism, and the Lapse Theory of Previous Convictions
Jesper Ryberg
4. Repeat Offenders and the Question of Desert
Youngjae Lee
5. ‘More to Apologise For’: Can We Find a Basis for the Recidivist Premium in a Communicative Theory of Punishment?
Chris Bennett
6. The Questionable Relevance of Previous Convictions to Punishments for Later Crimes
Michael Tonry
7. Prior-conviction Sentencing Enhancements: Rationales and Limits Based on Retributive and Utilitarian Proportionality Principles and Social Equality Goals
Richard S Frase
8. The Illusion of Proportionality: Desert and Repeat Offenders
Kevin R Reitz
9. Dimensions of Criminal History: Refl ections on Theory and Practice
Martin Wasik
10. The Role of Previous Convictions in England and Wales
Estella Baker and Andrew Ashworth
11. Previous Convictions and Proportionate Punishment under Swedish Law
Petter Asp
12. Assessing the Impact of a Recidivist Sentencing Premium on Crime and Recidivism Rates
Lila Kazemian
Index