It's helpful for the victim to understand how the court decides what sentence fits the crime
If you're a victim or witness of a crime and someone is taken to court and found guilty – you will probably be very interested in the sentence the court gives.
You've reported the crime and possibly had to go through the difficulty of giving evidence in court so it's only normal to want to see how the offender is held to account for what they have done.
Whether or not you think the sentence the court gives is right or not, it can be helpful to understand how the courts go about deciding what kind of sentence fits the crime. To help you better understand this process, we've worked with the Sentencing Council – the body responsible for setting the guidelines that judges and magistrates have to follow – to produce a leaflet and short video which explains the system.
Our Witness Service teams can use these resources to help people at court get to grips with the sentencing process. But you can also read more about sentencing on the Sentencing Council's website or watch the video below.
If you have to come to court and still have questions, please talk to our Witness Service.
How offenders are sentenced in England and Wales
What types of sentence can offenders get?
What factors influence the sentence an offender gets?