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NCJ Number: 81880 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Use of Suspended Sentences in South Australia - A Summary
Author(s): C E Dengate
Date Published: Unknown
Page Count: 52
Sponsoring Agency: Australian Institute of Criminology
Canberra ACT, 2601, Australia
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This overview of the suspended sentence in South Australia describes the extent of its use, characteristics of offenders given suspended sentences, type of conditions imposed, supervision, and effectiveness.
Abstract: The suspended sentence involves the imposition of a period of punishment, but the suspension of its execution, and is now the most frequently imposed form of bond in South Australia. This report first summarizes the 1969 amendments to the Offenders Probation Act governing suspended sentences and provides data on the numbers of supervised bonds assigned to probation officers between 1969 and 1976. A review of offenses show that most suspended sentences are for property crimes. A profile of offenders receiving suspended sentences covers age, marital status, occupation, sex, education, previous criminal record, and physical or mental problems. Also discussed are offenders' understanding of the suspended sentence and its effect on the imprisonment period. Conditions that can be imposed with the suspended sentence are detailed, such as monetary recognizance and restitution. The impact of presentence reports on success rates of suspended sentence cases is examined, along with difficulties in the existing estreatment process -- steps taken to revoke a suspended sentence when any of its conditions are breached. The estreatment system has operated erratically with disparate results, partly due to poor coordination between criminal justice agencies, the costs of extradition, and parole board discretion. A survey of 388 cases receiving a suspended sentence in 1974 illustrates these problems which impede any conclusive evaluation. A comparison of persons who were remanded in custody before receiving suspended sentences with those who were not indicated that the jail experience had no deterrent value. Recommendations for change address discretionary powers for courts, improvements in the estreatment process, more reasonable conditions for suspended sentences, and supervision.
Index Term(s): Australia; Suspended sentences
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