Criminal proceedings in Scotland 2017-2018

Summary of offences dealt with by courts, sentencing outcomes and characteristics of convicted offenders. Additional information on non-court penalties issued by the Police and Crown Office & Procurator Fiscal Service.

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1 In a sheriff solemn court, the jury determines whether an accused is guilty or not and the sheriff determines sentence. In a sheriff summary court, the sheriff determines both whether an accused is guilty or not and, if guilty, the sentence.

2 The court can sentence up to an additional six months where there is a bail aggravation on the charge, and Sheriff Court fines can be higher than £10,000 where there is legislative provision for this in relation to a specific offence.

3 Includes “taking, distribution, possession etc of indecent photos of children”, public indecency, sexual exposure, communicating indecently and intercourse with older child. See annex D for more detail.

4 Murder carries a mandatory life sentence upon conviction. Although an Order for Lifelong Restriction is a sentence that lasts for the rest of a person’s life, it is not treated as a life sentence for the purpose of these statistics.

5 The median value is the midpoint of a ranked series of data so that very high or very low values do not impact excessively on the calculated average.

6 Year-on-year comparisons for fines and compensation orders are in cash terms, and have therefore not been adjusted for inflation.



Email: Ian Volante

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