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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 134923 Find in a Library
Title: Severity of Sentences: A Comparison Between France and Quebec
Journal: Revue Internationale de Criminologie et de Police Technique  Volume:43  Issue:1  Dated:(January-March 1990)  Pages:26-34
Author(s): M Ouimet; M Cusson
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 9
Type: Survey (Cross-Cultural)
Format: Article
Language: French
Country: Switzerland
Annotation: This analysis surveys 199 judicial experts from Montreal and 48 experts from Aix-Marseille to compare the sentencing practices of Quebec and France.
Abstract: The sample population consisted of judges, prosecutors, and defense attorneys and was asked to propose sentences for three hypothetical offenders whose cases were presented in a questionnaire. The results indicated that the sentencing variations between the two countries in the number of jail terms imposed and the length of incarceration were minimal. Although the Montreal experts tended to consider the three offenses (a burglary, a crime of passion, a hold-up murder) as more serious than their French counterparts, both groups also agreed on the objectives and goals of punishment. This agreement is all the more astonishing as the two countries belong to different continents and different legal systems. The article concludes that French and Quebec experts share the same moral values, but leaves it open whether this agreement stems from a common French background or a tradition the countries share with other democratic court systems. Numerical charts and a short bibliography are included.
Main Term(s): Foreign sentencing
Index Term(s): Crime seriousness measures; France; Geographical sentencing variation; Quebec; Sentencing factors
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