Skip to main content

Reoffenders: Alternatives to Prison

Question for Ministry of Justice

UIN 143693, tabled on 21 March 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many repeat offenders of each type in each (a) region and (b) local justice area have been given non-custodial sentences after committing more than three of the same type of offence.

Answered on

8 April 2022

This Government is committed to tackling the causes of reoffending to keep our communities safe. Measures in the Police, Crime, Sentencing, and Courts Bill, currently before Parliament, take a targeted approach so that the most serious and dangerous offenders are kept in prison for longer, while tougher and more effective community sentences tackle the underlying causes of criminal behaviour and improve the supervision and rehabilitation of offenders in the community.

Beyond the Bill, and as set out in the Beating Crime Plan and the Prisons Strategy White Paper, the Government is delivering a package of measures to tackle repeat offending. We have implemented the revised Integrated Offender Management Strategy; we are increasing drug treatment, the proportion of prison leavers into jobs and improving access to accommodation; and we are exploring innovative uses of electronic monitoring through the acquisitive crime GPS tagging project, the roll-out of the Alcohol Abstinence and Monitoring Requirement, and the introduction of Alcohol Monitoring on Licence.

Sentencing in individual cases is entirely a matter for our independent courts, taking into account all the circumstances of each case. Section 65 of the Sentencing Code provides that, when considering the seriousness of an offence, the court is required to treat each relevant previous conviction as an aggravating factor. This principle is also reflected in the Sentencing Council’s General guideline: overarching principles.

The number of offenders who received a non-custodial sentence on their last sentencing occasion for an offence, in each year, after committing more than three offences of the same type, can be viewed in the attached response tables.

The data has been separated for each offence type and by region for the years 2016-2020. This data is not available by local justice area.

The attached tables are taken from offence data published on the Police National Computer. They do not include offences committed outside England and Wales.

To note:

  • ‘non-custodial sentence’ has been interpreted to include all sentencing disposals other than immediate custody.
  • the ‘Breach Offences’ tab captures offences committed during an ongoing court order.
Named day
Named day questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.