Extended presumption against short sentences: monitoring information - January - December 2020

Second edition of information to monitor the extension of the presumption against short sentences to 12 months or less.


As discussed, the impact of COVID-19 on court business and the unavoidable backlogs caused by court closures mean it is not possible to confidently identify and attribute cause to any trends in court disposals over the last 12 months. However, the following have been noted in the data presented and we will continue to monitor progress.

Numbers of custodial sentences of less than or equal to 12 months, and the proportion of all disposals that these made up, were reducing in the period between the implementation of the extended presumption and lockdown.

The number of Restriction of Liberty Orders (RLO) issued has increased steadily since lockdown eased and numbers were at a recent high in December 2020.

The distribution of disposals by gender was unchanged following lockdown.


Email: justice_analysts@gov.scot

Back to top