No more credit (for prisoners)

If the Tories get their way, criminals won’t receive lenient sentences just because they spend time in pre-trial custody


Judges have been doing it for years: awarding criminals a so-called “two-for-one” credit for time spent in custody before a trial. Example: an accused rapist who waits two years in prison before his day in court, and is later convicted and sentenced to four years for his crime, will actually walk free that very day (because those two years of pre-trial custody are, according to the two-for-one formula, worth four on the other end). Police and prosecutors hate the practice, and it’s clear that countless criminals try to exploit the rules by stretching their pre-trial custody—with endless motions and delays and other legal wrangling—in the hopes of lightening their sentence on the other end. Stephen Harper hopes to change that. According to reports, the federal Conservatives plan to table legislation tomorrow that will scrap the double-time credit. Get ready for the Charter challenges.

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No more credit (for prisoners)

  1. Finally : way to go CPC I have been waiting a long time to get rid of this!

  2. It’s going to end up costing the taxpayers a whole lot of money. Longer sentences = big bucks. One of the consequences of longer sentences, etc in California was that by the mid 1990s the prison budget gobbled up more money than anything else. In fact, the prison budge started to cannibalize the education budget, among others. So be careful what you wish for because it all costs money. Once a sentence is longer than 2 years + a day you have committed to spending $100,000 a year per prisoner.

    • No, it will save money by putting a stop to the gulty extending their trials for frivous reasons.

      And how could there be a charter challenge to getting rid of this disgusting travesty of judge made law?

  3. Gotta love it. The economy is tanking and all our government wants to talk about is crime. Crime????

    Stephen Harper: king of distractions.

  4. The way it is now a defense lawyer can delay proceedings as much as possible, knowing that in the end it will result in less time served for the defendant. That wastes money and time and really only benefits the guilty. It’s a change that should see wide support except among those who will be doing the time.

  5. I find it equally disgraceful that someone should have to spend 2 years in jail before they have even been convicted of anything! What the hell kind of justice system punishes the innocent (and yes, we are innocent before proven guilty) in this way?

    You know, incredibly, it is the JOB of the defense counsel to keep their client out of jail, not some sort of debased finagling to keep criminals on the street.

    And thank god for the occasional judge who smacks the police and prosecution for their lumbering efforts. Justice delayed is justice denied. This 2 for 1 was a small re-balancing.

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