Offenders’ views on severity of punishment

Offenders’ views on severity. Punishment is one of the most important essential of the criminal justice system in England and Wales. This article aims to outline the different concept of punishment from offender’s perspective. It argues, in the English criminal law, punishment is not explicitly defined, neither it’s association with other specified aims of the criminal justice system, namely: public protection, crime reduction, reparation and rehabilitation.

Defining Punishment

If punishment cannot be defined, it is impossible to determine how to effectively punish. (Incitation). Furthermore, two subjective studies investigated offender’s perceptions to imprisonment and community penalties. From the statistics collected, the authors inspected the exact extent to which the participating offenders explained their sentences as punishment and how effectively they understood their punishment to be.

Criminal Punishment

Any attempt to justify criminal punishment requires the penal state to ensure that the ‘correct’ amount of punishment is imposed, although different justifications vary significantly on how to determine what constitutes that ‘correct amount’. Most approaches to define punishment tend to start with the ‘Hart/Benn/Flew model, under which criminal punishment is:

Offenders’ views on severity. Unpleasant, Retrospective, Individuating, Intentional and legally bond. (incitation)Ultimately ,the Hart/Benn/Flew model attempts to provide an effective starting point for discussing the justification of punishment as it should be, rather than reflecting upon its practical social realities.(incitation).Nonetheless this position is controversial.

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