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Robbers armed with guns or knives to receive longer sentences


United Kingdom: Violent robbers armed with knives or guns are likely to receive longer sentences in future under drafted guidelines.
Robbers who threaten victims with a bladed weapon or imitation firearm will find themselves in the most serious category of offending when they come before the courts.
These are the newly proposed recommendations by the Sentencing Council.
The proposals are contained in a consultation paper on expanded guidelines for robbery.
The same also introduce punishment ranges of up 20 years for those responsible for multiple attacks on commercial premises.
Guidelines issued by the Sentencing Council for England and Wales are not for altering the law as a whole.
By setting out suggested ranges for offenses it ensures greater consistency across the courts and reflects shifts in public perceptions of crime.
According to the council, penalties for robbery have risen by around 20% since 2007.
Street robberies account for nearly two-thirds of all robbery convictions.
Any offense where a knife or gun is used, or the intention is to threaten, such crimes will be considered to be the most serious in order to ensure the longest sentences.


Video on sentencing offenders in England and Wales