Custody of convicted children and young people: practice guidance

The procedures to be followed regarding children sentenced under section 205(2) or section 208 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995.

Detention Arrangements: Section 205(2)

54. As with adults convicted of murder, the court when imposing a sentence of without limit of time, must set a "punishment part". The "punishment part" is the part of the sentence of detention without limit of time which the sentencing judge considers appropriate to satisfy the requirement for retribution and deterrence (ignoring the part, if any, which may be necessary for the protection of the public).

55. The practical arrangements in the case of a child sentenced to detention under section 205(2), are essentially the same as those for children detained under section 208. The emphasis, however, is different because of the nature of the sentence, the likelihood that release will not take place for some years because of the "punishment part" imposed by the court, and the difficulty of assessing risk to the public in the case of those convicted of murder at a young age.

56. The CYP Placement Manager, in consultation with the establishment where the child is detained, will convene a placement meeting, usually within 4 weeks of conviction, and the arrangements described for sentences under Section 208 should apply. The emphasis should be on the sentence programme. A key component in assessing the child's needs is whether there is a requirement for on‑going psychiatric or other specialist counselling. At the placement meeting, the CYP Placement Manager will explain the implications of a section 205(2) sentence and in particular the statutory provisions governing release.

Life Licence

57. The CYP Placement Manager will make it clear to the child and their family at the placement meeting that a child convicted of murder and sentenced to detention without limit of time will not be considered for release on life licence until the punishment part of the sentence has expired. It will be further explained that on expiry of the punishment part, the child's case will be considered by the Parole Board for Scotland (PBS). If release is directed the child will, if applicable, be released on licence.

58. Review meetings should be convened at least quarterly to review the child's progress, unless there is a change in circumstances.

Children Subject To Indeterminate Sentences Under Section 208

59. Exceptionally, a court may impose a sentence of detention without limit of time under section 208 of the 1995 Act. Any child sentenced to detention without limit of time under section 208 should be managed in the same way as those sentenced under section 205(2).




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