Criminal Justice Act, 1999


Guilty Pleas and Certificate Evidence

Guilty pleas.

29.—(1) In determining what sentence to pass on a person who has pleaded guilty to an offence, other than an offence for which the sentence is fixed by law, a court, if it considers it appropriate to do so, shall take into account—

(a) the stage in the proceedings for the offence at which the person indicated an intention to plead guilty, and

(b) the circumstances in which this indication was given.

(2) To avoid doubt, it is hereby declared that subsection (1) shall not preclude a court from passing the maximum sentence prescribed by law for an offence if, notwithstanding the plea of guilty, the court is satisfied that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence which warrant the maximum sentence.

(3) In this section, “fixed by law”, in relation to a sentence for an offence, means a sentence which a court is required by law to impose on a person of full capacity who is guilty of the offence.