New minimum prison sentences for 'second strike' Knife offences
On 17 July 2015 minimum prison sentences for those who are caught carrying a knife on more than one occasion came into force.
The law states that it an offence to carry a bladed article in a public place.
This applies to any article which has a blade or is sharply pointed except a folding pocket knife unless, in relation to a folding pocket knife, the cutting edge of its blade exceeds 3 inches.
It may be defence for an individual charged with an offence under this section to prove that he had good reason or lawful authority for having the article with him in a public place.
Now the law states that adults convicted more than once of being in possession of a bladed article face a minimum 6 month prison sentence with the maximum remaining at 4 years. Young offenders aged 16 and 17, will face a minimum 4 month detention and training order.
However, in certain circumstances, the law give courts a discretion not to impose the sentence where there are particular circumstances relating to the offender or the offence which would make it ‘unjust’.
Levins Solicitors are here to advise you on factors that may make it ‘unjust’ to impose the mandatory minimum sentence. Factors may include things like: good progress made in relation to the previous conviction, length of time since earlier conviction, delay in bringing proceedings, sentence would be manifestly excessive or inappropriate, overall totality of the sentence.
All of these factors will be need to be argued on your behalf and you will require expert help to effectively present your case at court. Levins Solicitors are very experienced in dealing with such cases and pride ourselves on always getting the best result for our clients.