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Youth Courts Notes

BPTC Law Notes > BPTC Criminal Litigation Notes

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A more recent version of these Youth Courts notes – written by City Law School students – is available here.

The following is a more accessble plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our BPTC Criminal Litigation Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

YOUTH COURTS: BASICS Juvenile: "Child" or "Young Person" Adult Criminal proceedings: 18+
Sentencing: 21+ (at 21 liable to imprisonment rather than detention in Young Offenders Institution) Juvenile Defendant who has not attained the age of 18 (i.e. 17 or under); Must be 10 or over (age of criminal responsibility). Child or Young Person (s107(1) CYPA 1933) Child - 10-13 inclusive Young person - 14-17 inclusive Under-10: Irrebuttable presumption cannot commit criminal offence. Youth Offending Team (YOT) s39 CDA 1998 - each local authority has to establish a youth offending team (YOT) Composition This must comprise:

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a probation officer;

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a person with experience of social work in relation to children, nominated by the director of children's services appointed by the local authority;

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a social worker;

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a police officer;

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a person nominated by a Primary Care Trust or Local Health Board any part of whose area lies within the local authority's area; and

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a person with experience in education nominated by the director of children's services.

Role

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Co-ordinate the provision of youth justice services for all those in the authority's area who need them

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AND carry out such functions as are assigned to it in the local authority's 'youth justice plan'

Youth Justice Plan Made under s40 CDA sets out:

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how youth justice services in the area are to be provided and funded, and

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functions of the YOT

Duties

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YOT is able to:
* ascertain the needs of each young offender,
* Identify the specific problems that make that young person offend, and
* Measure the risk the young person poses to others

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Enables them to identify suitable programmes to address the needs of the Young Offenders to prevent further offending. Aims of Youth Justice System

s37 CDA 1998 - Principal Aim: Prevent offending by children and young persons

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Duty of all persons carrying out youth justice functions to have regard to that aim

s44 - Every court dealing with child/Young Person (as offender or otherwise) shall have regard to the welfare of the child/Young Person Discretion of CPS to continue/discontinue proceedings against a child/Young Person

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Reviewable by divisional court only where it can be demonstrated any decision was made regardless of or clearly contrary to settled policy of DPP evolved in the public interest

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must consider best interests and welfare of child/Young Person Defendant and child/Young Person victim(s)

[?] Must follow Code for Crown Prosecutors & The CPS: Youth Offenders Composition of Youth Court Composition of Bench Either

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a district judge (in Magistrates Court) sitting alone, or

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Max: 3 justices - include: a man and a woman

Youth Court Justices receive additional training - elected by peers as suitable, then trained If there is no suitably qualified man/woman justice to sit then may sit w/o if deemed inexpedient in the interests of justice for there to be an adjournment

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discretion must be exercised publicly and with submissions from the parties

Chairman Must be chaired by:

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District judge, or

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Youth justice who is on the list of approved youth court chairmen

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