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Encyclopedia > Tariff (criminal law)

Under British criminal law, a tariff is the minimum period that a person serving an indefinite prison sentence must serve before that person becomes eligible for parole. The Home Secretary bears responsibility for tariffs, and often considers the recommendation of the sentencing judge, and from the Lord Chief Justice. However, the Home Secetary is not bound by recommendations from the judiciary. Parole can have different meanings depending on the context. ... The Home Secretary (official full title Secretary of State for the Home Department) is the chief United Kingdom government minister responsible for law and order in England and Wales; his or her remit includes policing, the criminal justice system, the prison service, internal security, and matters of citizenship and immigration. ... The Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales is the second-highest judge of the Courts of England and Wales, after the Lord Chancellor, and the presiding judge of Criminal Division of the Court of Appeal, and of the Queens Bench Division of the High Court. ...

The purpose of this mechanism has been described as follows:

The tariff is the minimum period a life sentence prisoner must serve to meet the requirements of retribution and deterrence before being considered for release. After this minimum period has been served release will only take place where the prisoner is judged no longer a risk of harm to the public.

(Hilary Benn, House of Commons Hansard Written Answers for 8 Jul 2002). The Right Honourable Hilary James Wedgwood Benn (November 26, 1953) British politician and is Labour Member of Parliament of Leeds Central and Secretary of State for International Development Hilary Benn speaking in Oxford, January 2005 Hilary Benn is a fourth generation MP, being the son of former Labour Cabinet Minister...

The factors involved in the determination of a tariff were contested in the 1993 case of Robert Thompson and Jon Venables, two boys around ten years old who were convicted of the murder of two year old James Bulger. Although the trial judge sentenced the killers to eight years in prison each, the Home Secretary (then Michael Howard) set a tariff of fifteen years, based in part on the public outcry over the murders. The House of Lords overturned this tariff, criticizing the Home Secretary for giving too much weight to public opinion. 1993 (MCMXCIII) is a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar and marked the Beginning of the International Decade to Combat Racism and Racial Discrimination (1993-2003). ... Robert Thompson may refer to: Sir Robert Thompson, British counter-insurgency expert Robert Thompson, cartoonist Robert Thompson, murderer of Liverpool toddler Jamie Bulger Robert Means Thompson (1849-1930), U.S. naval officer Robert N. Thompson, leader of the Social Credit Party of Canada in the 1960s This is a disambiguation... For the American wanted by the FBI for murder, see James J. Bulger. ... James Bulger James Bulger (March 16, 1990 – February 12, 1993) was a toddler who was abducted and murdered by two ten-year-old boys, Jon Venables and Robert Thompson, on Merseyside, in the United Kingdom. ... Michael Howard The Right Honourable Michael Howard, QC, MP (born July 7, 1941) is a British politician and caretaker Leader of the Opposition and the Conservative Party, having formally resigned the post on 7 October 2005. ... This article is about the British House of Lords. ...

External link

  • The Bulger killers' legal challenge explained



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