This sounds like a step in the right direction, but as always it's taken some tragic losses and a media frenzy to get this.
Wednesday May 7, 09:51 AM
Tough punishments for sex murderers
LONDON (Reuters) - Convicted child sex murderers and "terrorist" killers will automatically be jailed for the rest of their lives under guidelines being proposed for judges in England and Wales.
The tough new sentencing rules, unveiled by Home Secretary David Blunkett on Wednesday, would ensure that anyone convicted of abducting and murdering a child would die in prison.
"Full life" sentences would also be imposed for "terrorist" murder, or multiple murders which are premeditated, sexual or sadistic, Blunkett said in a statement. Offenders with previous murder convictions would also face the full term.
"For the most serious crimes, such as the sexual, sadistic murder of children, or terrorist murder, life should mean life, as opposed to current practice of a 20 year minimum term," Blunkett said in a statement.
"For other serious crimes, such as the murder of a police or prison officer in the course of duty, or racially motivated murder, a minimum term of 30 years imprisonment should be passed, an increase of 10 years on current sentencing practice."
Murder involving the use of a firearm or explosive, killing of witnesses, and religious, sexual or sadistically motivated murder would also attract the 30 year minimum.
The new sentencing guidelines, added to the Criminal Justice Bill awaiting approval by parliament, are part of an attempted crackdown on crime by Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labour Party.
They were issued after the European Court of Human Rights ruled last year that existing arrangements, under which prisoners serve a minimum term set by judges and home secretaries then decide their release date, constituted a breach of the ECHR.
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau