Each defendant had been convicted of firearms offences which were subject to a five year minimum sentence. That minimum had been imposed, but they appealed.
Held: In exceptional circumstances, the court should impose a lesser sentence. The provision of a minimum sentence was capable of being arbitrary, particuarly since the section was absolute. The statute allowed that the circumstances of the defendant may be taken into account. It was not necessary to read s51A down to make it Human Rights compliant. One snetence was reduced.
Times 27-Sep-2005,  EWCA Crim 2056
England and Wales
Updated: 04 July 2022; Ref: scu.234546