Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Could? - Yes. Will? - No

'I'm sorry': Teenager could face five years in jail after admitting throwing fire extinguisher during fees protest

So reads the Daily Mail's headline. It is of course misleading, and the journo who wrote it and the editor who told him to write it know that it is.

Point 1 - The maximum sentence is for the worst possible case, following conviction after trial.
Point 2 - The early guilty plea ensures a discount of one-third on the sentence.
Point 3 - If the offender has no previous convictions he must have credit for that.
Point 4 - Prison is likely, and the young man will be lucky if it is suspended.
Point 5 - The saloon-bar experts and the Gadgets will deplore the sentence as soft.

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