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NCJ Number: 157346 Find in a Library
Title: Sentence Indication Scheme Evaluation: The Impact of the NSW (New South Wales) Sentence Indication Scheme on Plea Rates and Case Delay; Interim Report
Author(s): D Weatherburn
Corporate Author: New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 23
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research
Sydney NSW 2000, Australia
Publication Number: ISBN 0-7310-6403-8
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

New South Wales Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research
Level 8, St James Centre
111 Elizabeth Street
Sydney NSW 2000,

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This report presents the methodology and findings of a study that examined the impact of the New South Wales (NSW) sentence indication scheme on plea rates and case delay.
Abstract: At the beginning of the first law term in 1992, the NSW Parliament passed legislation that allows the Chief Judge of the NSW District Court to introduce a "Sentence Indication" scheme. The scheme provides for an accused person committed for trial in the NSW District Court to seek an indication of the sentence that will be imposed if a guilty plea is entered. The aim of the scheme is "to obtain earlier pleas of guilty and more pleas of guilty." One section of this report describes the basis on which the sentence indication scheme might be expected to reduce the proportion of defendants who proceed to trial in the District Criminal Court and reduce the time between committal for trial and case completion, where a defendant elects to change a plea. Another section describes the approach taken to assess the impact of the scheme on these variables. Changes in method of case disposal were separately examined for Parramatta District Court and Sydney District Court; however, cases disposed of in the Newcastle and Wollongong District Courts were grouped together for the purposes of analyzing changes in method of case disposal, as were cases disposed of in Lismore, Dubbo, and Wagga Wagga District Courts. This is followed by a section that examines the impact of the scheme on the method of completing matters registered for trial in that court. The concluding section examines the impact of the sentence indication scheme on trends in delay for matters registered for trial but finalized on a plea of guilty. The data collected do not provide much support for the proposition that the sentence indication scheme reduced the proportion of persons committed for trial who actually proceeded to trial. Only one group of courts showed a significantly lower percentage of cases that proceeded to trial after the introduction of the scheme. Implications of the findings are discussed. 15 notes, 5 tables, and 10 figures
Main Term(s): Court procedures
Index Term(s): Foreign courts; New South Wales; Plea negotiations; Sentencing/Sanctions
Note: From the General Report Series.
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