Publication - Corporate report

Prosecution of young people: report

Published: 27 Nov 2018
Directorate:
Justice Directorate
Part of:
Children and families, Law and order
ISBN:
9781787814011

The Inspectorate of Prosecution in Scotland's thematic report on the prosecution of young people in the Sheriff and Justice of Peace courts.

78 page PDF

971.9 kB

78 page PDF

971.9 kB

Contents
Prosecution of young people: report
Footnotes

78 page PDF

971.9 kB

Footnotes

1. Scottish Government, The Kilbrandon Report, Children and Young Persons Scotland, April 1964.

2. British Journal of Criminology: V1, Children in Trouble, p112-122, 1966. Shaw, Lord Kilbrandon.

3. Paragraph 252.

4. Discussed at paragraph 7.

5. Scottish Government, The 10 most commonly measured ACEs; Abuse – physical, verbal and sexual, Household Adversities – mental illness, incarcerated relative, domestic violence, parental separation, substance abuse, Neglect – physical and emotional, 31 July 2018.

6. GIRFEC was first introduced as a concept in 2004 and following consultation, proposals known as GIRFEC were published in April 2005.

7. Scottish Government, Youth Justice Strategy: progress report, 21 June 2017.

8. Scottish Children's Reporter Administration (SCRA) Statistical Analysis, 2017/18.

9. Children and Young People in Custody in Scotland: Looking Behind the Data, October 2017.

10. Children and Young People in Custody in Scotland: Looking Behind the Data, October 2017.

11. Spice Briefing 'Children and the Scottish Criminal Justice System' published 14/06/16, CYCJ 'A Guide to Youth Justice in Scotland: Policy, Practice and Legislation' (2017), CYCJ 'Just a Wee Boy Not Cut Out for Prison' (Nolan, Dyer and Vaswani, 2017).

12. Children in the care of the Local Authority – sometimes referred to as a "corporate parent".

13. Section 108 Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act 2016.

14. Article 1 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, ratified by the UK Government in 1991.

15. A year long programme of events providing young people with an opportunity to be heard and listened to on social issues and to showcase their talents.

16. Lord Advocate's Guidelines to the Chief Constable on the Reporting to Procurator Fiscals of offences alleged to have been committed by children, March 2014.

17. See the CYCJ: A Guide to Youth Justice in Scotland: policy, practice and legislation – a comprehensive account of the approach to Youth Justice in Scotland. CYCJ provides support and guidance to practitioners and managers involved in the delivery of youth justice services.

18. A multi-agency partnership set up to coordinate and support the Whole Systems Approach (WSA) and to reduce youth offending.

19. Source: COPFS Management Information Unit (MIU).

20. Combining cases relating to different incidents alleged to have been committed by one accused person into a single case, enabling all the charges to be dealt with at one trial. This is commonly referred to as "conjoining" or "rolling up".

21. Source: COPFS MIU – 95 subjects.

22. Source: COPFS MIU – 86 subjects.

23. Source: COPFS MIU – 72 subjects.

24. Source: COPFS MIU – 141 subjects.

25. Source: COPFS MIU – 83 subjects.

26. Source: COPFS MIU – 28 subjects.

27. Source: COPFS MIU – 83 subjects.

28. Section 227A-Section 227ZO of the 1995 Act.

29. Section 83 Children's Hearings (Scotland) Act 2011.

30. Net-widening is the name given to a process or practical change that results in a greater number of people being included in the Criminal Justice System.

31. McAra, L., and McVie, S., (2007), 'Youth Justice? The Impact of System Contact on Patterns of Desistance from Offending'. European Journal of Criminology 4 (3) 315-345.

32. Discussed in the Scottish Government, Preventing offending: getting it right for children and young people progress report, 17 June 2017.

33. A system of criminal justice which focuses on the rehabilitation of offenders through reconciliation with victims and the community.

34. Wellbeing is defined using the SHANARRI wellbeing indicators – Safe, Healthy, Achieving, Nurtured, Respected, Responsible and Included.

35. The Chief Officer of the Scottish Children's Reporter Administration (SCRA).

36. The Children's Hearing is comprised of a panel of volunteers from the local community.

37. Section 25(2) of the 2011 Act.

38. Section 41A of the 1995 Act.

39. Lord Advocate's Guidelines to the Chief Constable on the Reporting to Procurator Fiscals of offences alleged to have been committed by children, March 2014.

40. Section 42(1) of the 1995 Act: The Lord Advocate can delegate the authority on his behalf.

41. In accordance with the definition of a child in Section 199 in the 2011 Act.

42. Section 49(3) of the 1995 Act.

43. Section 49(6) of the 1995 Act.

44. Set up by the Scottish Government to drive forward the implementation of the Strategy and includes representation from Police Scotland, the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA), Scottish Children's Reporter Administration (SCRA) and Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS), together with education, health and third sector.

45. Scottish Government, Justice in Scotland: vision and priorities, 11 July 2017.

46. Key findings from the 'Edinburgh Study of Youth Transition and Crime' (McAra and McVie 2007, 2010).

47. Youth Justice Strategy.

48. There are six Sheriff Court Districts comprising the various courts in their area.

49. A senior member of the civil service who sits on the COPFS Executive Board.

50. Release on condition to appear at court on a certain date.

51. Submission of a Standard Police Report to COPFS.

52. Section 75 of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988.

53. Section 303ZA(2) of the 1995 Act.

54. Source: COPFS MIU: (1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017 inclusive) – includes all jointly reported cases.

55. Using the Scottish Government crime and offence classification.

56. Totals do not add up as no decision was recorded for 19 offenders.

57. Excludes any case prosecuted in the High Court.

58. Includes cases discontinued during the court proceedings.

59. Joint agreement between COPFS and SCRA: Decision making in cases of children jointly reported to the Procurator Fiscal and Children's Reporter, Revised: November 2015.

60. For certain road traffic offences, the Lord Advocate has delegated authority to make such decisions to Procurators Fiscal.

61. See case study at page 41.

62. Discussed at paragraph 206.

63. See case study at page 41.

64. Section 3 of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009.

65. Joint agreement between COPFS and SCRA: Decision making in cases of children jointly reported to the Procurator Fiscal and Children's Reporter, Revised: November 2015.

66. The bail order provides conditions that the offender remain within an address between certain hours, usually 7pm at night until 7am and that they will present themselves to the police, if they attend, to check they are complying.

67. As at 20/09/2018.

68. A court order imposed as an alternative to imprisonment or detention requiring an offender to be in a certain place (or alternatively not in such a place) for specific periods of the day or week monitored by electronic equipment: Section 245A to Section 245J of the 1995 Act.

69. A verdict of acquittal.

70. As at 20/09/2018.

71. A breakdown in communication between CJSW and COPFS resulting in substantial delays.

72. There was no record of the offenders being subject to a CSO.

73. Section 303ZA(2) of the 1995 Act.

74. See Chart 2, page 22.

75. Guidelines of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on Child-friendly Justice.

76. Section 23B(2) of the 1995 Act.

77. Sections 23B-23C of the 1995 Act.

78. Provides that everyone has the right to liberty and security of person and no one shall be deprived of his liberty save in specified circumstances and in accordance with procedures prescribed by law.

79. Criminal Justice (Scotland) Act 2016, Sections 16-19.

80. Kilbrandon report, page 80, key finding 16.

81. Children and Young People in Custody in Scotland: Looking Behind the Data: (Broderick and Carnie).

82. Children and Young People in Custody in Scotland: Looking Behind the Data: (Cesaroni).

83. Some custody reports and undertakings are dealt with in local procurator fiscal offices. More serious cases are dealt with by specialist prosecutors or in local procurator fiscal offices.

84. Guidelines of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on Child-friendly Justice.

85. Section 6 of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009.

86. Scottish Government, Protecting Scotland's children and young people: it is still everyone's job, 2 March 2017.

87. Diversion to the Driver's Improvement Scheme for road traffic offences is considered separately at Chapter 5.

88. Scottish Government, Diverting young people from prosecution: toolkit, 22 June 2011.

89. As at 20/09/2018.

90. All references to no further reports of offending are as at 10/08/2018.

91. The circumstances of the offence did not fall within the mandatory criteria to prosecute by solemn procedure.

92. A breakdown in communication between CJSW and COPFS resulting in substantial delays.

93. As at 10/08/2018.

94. As at 20/09/2018.

95. http://www.esytc.ed.ac.uk/

96. The Council of Europe Guidelines on Child-friendly Justice.

97. Paragraph 209 of the Report of Justice Committee on the Role and purpose of COPFS and COPFS reply:

http://www.parliament.scot/S5_JusticeCommittee/Reports/JS052017R09Rev.pdf http://www.parliament.scot/S5_JusticeCommittee/Inquiries/20170530COPFSresponsetoReport.pdf

98. As at 20/09/2018.

99. Council of Europe Guidelines on Child-friendly Justice.

100. As at 16/10/2018.

101. Eligible candidates are screened by social work to assess if they meet criteria for this court.

102. Scottish Government, Review of the Aberdeen Problem Solving Approach: report, 5 September 2018.

103. The University of Edinburgh, Delivering Justice for Children and Young People: Key Messages from the Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime. McAra, L. & McVie, S. (2013).

104. Offences such as murder and rape require to be prosecuted on indictment.

105. Data pre-dates COPFS prosecution policy review on 01/09/2017.

106. Number of criminal convictions and outstanding cases are taken from the criminal record of the offender in the police report.

107. Figures do not add up to 76 as some offenders fall within more than one category.

108. An alternative disposal or police direct measures does not form part of a criminal record. It includes police warnings or fixed penalty notices and COPFS alternatives to prosecution.

109. For certain road traffic offences, the Lord Advocate has delegated authority to make such decisions to Procurators Fiscal.

110. Section 42(1) of the 1995 Act.

111. A key finding of the Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime.

112. See key finding at page 36.

113. The charges on the petition may differ from those for which the offender is convicted.

114. As at 20/09/2018.

115. Outstanding case – as at 20/09/2018.

116. There are two levels available for the unpaid work requirement of a Community Payback Order: Level 1 – imposes between 20-100 hours and Level 2 – imposes between 101-300 hours.

117. As at 20/09/2018.

118. Discussed at paragraphs 116/117.

119. See Chart 1, page 21.

120. Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act 1995.

121. Excludes cases where the offender was diverted to the Driver Improvement Scheme.

122. In 61% of cases there were other less serious offences.

123. Known as deserted simpliciter.

124. In general statutory charges that can be prosecuted in summary courts only must commence within six months after the date of the last mentioned offence. If the offender is remanded in custody, proceedings must commence within 40 days. Section 136(1) and Section 147(1) of the 1995 Act.


Contact

Email: Carolyn Sharp