Clients who are able to fund their case privately instruct Jim to defend them against allegations of affray. Facing such proceedings is daunting, particularly because they are (or should be) only instituted when there is a serious disturbance to public order. The offence is triable either way, so the case can be heard either in the magistrates’ court or the crown court and, if convicted, for all but the lowest culpability or the lowest category of harm (when there is little or no physical injury to others and only “some” fear or distress caused), the sentencing guidelines specify a starting point of imprisonment.
It is not uncommon for people to just be in “the wrong place at the wrong time“; they get caught up in a disturbance as they’re leaving the pub or a club and before they know it they’ve been scooped up by the police in the ensuing melee. Perhaps they were involved but were acting lawfully, in self defence or the defence of other innocent parties. Trying to unpick that early decision by the police to arrest can be difficult, particularly nowadays when police budgets and therefore their resources are squeezed ever tighter; their focus can quickly shift from an investigative role to one of securing a voluntary confession or, if that fails, getting the suspect charged and released so that they become someone else’s problem (i.e. the court’s). Errors may be compounded by lethargy or, worse, process corruption.
To increase your prospects of success, you need to instruct a solicitor early
Instructing Jim early greatly increases the prospects of a successful outcome for those falsely accused of a public order offence.
Jim takes a proactive approach to defending his clients, leaving no stone unturned or inquiry outstanding in the pursuit of his clients’ best interests. Unfortunately, such an approach is not funded by legal aid; the government doesn’t want you to have the “best defence” or instruct the “best lawyer” – it wants only to fund the bare minimum, which is not a position you want to take when your freedom, livelihood and reputation are on the line.
When clients instruct Jim they can expect him to work fast and purposefully to:
Secure and preserve evidence, such as:
CCTV footage, from street-facing cameras as well as those inside premises;
Body-worn camera footage from police and security staff;
The first accounts of eye witnesses.
Trace and interview potential witnesses;
Liaise with the police to ensure that they understand his client’s case and pursue all reasonable lines of inquiry;
Communicate with the police lawyers (Crown Prosecution Service [“CPS”]) and encourage them to drop the case.
If you are accused of affray, or any criminal offence for that matter, having a solicitor with over 25 years’ experience of criminal defence work really can make a difference. Securing Jim or another dedicated legal professional to work on your behalf is the first, essential, step you should take to ensure a favourable outcome.
If you instruct Jim, probably the first thing you will realise is that he is a straight-talking lawyer who provides honest and frank advice without any "BS". The same is also true about what he will tell you in relation to how much it will likely cost you to hire him, and he aims to be completely transparent about what he charges, what this pays for and how this compares to a lawyer being remunerated under legal aid. Jim believes this is the only way his clients can make a sensible, informed decision on how to proceed.
Jim has compiled a database of historical bills for matters in a single financial year to help him estimate how much a case will cost. Looking at this data there are 203 cases1 where:
The main allegation was affray,
There was a single defendant, who
Pleaded not guilty, and
Was subseqently tried before a jury in the Crown Court.
Based on this information, Jim's advice is:
The prosecution evidence in a typical case alleging affray normally runs to approximately 143 pages (note that this does not include CCTV, multi-media or digital evidence; nor does it include any unused material served by the prosecution [i.e. material which the prosecution believes may undermine its case or assist the case for the accused] or any evidence collected by the defence); the minimum number of pages was recorded as 8 and the maximum was 2,713;
A crown court trial where there is a single defendant and the main allegation is affray will normally comprise 15 prosecution witnesses and last around 4 days (the lowest number of witnesses recorded was 2 and the most was 56; the shortest trial recorded was 1 and the longest was 16);
For a trial lasting 4 days with 15 witnesses and a similar page count of 143 pages, Jim estimates the total cost (including VAT and the advocates fee but excluding any other disbursements) will be in the range of £33,420 to £52,860. This compares to the typical fee2 of £4,300 paid to the legal team under legal aid.
Graduated table of estimated fees, including VAT
Pages of Material
Days in Court
1 Note that this doesn't represent all of the data on historical cases; in order to try to provide a "like-for-like" comparison it is restricted to cases where there was a single client and the matter was tried in the crown court. This will give you a general idea but obviously Jim will be able to advise you on the specifics of your particular case and the impact this may have on the likely cost. ↩
2 This is an approximation. There are calculators available on the MOJ\'s website which will help you work out the fee claimable under the scheme, exluding any additional payment made for "special preparation".↩
It was appropriate to make a football banning order in relation to a football supporter who pleaded guilty to an offence of affray involving rival football supporters shortly after watching a football match. Given the offender's previous record of football-related disorder, there were reasonable grounds to believe that making an order would help prevent violence or disorder at or in connection with any regulated football matches.
CA (Crim Div) (Sir Brian Leveson PQBD, Jay J, Freedman J)
2 May 2019
The offence of possession of a prohibited firearm contrary to the Firearms Act 1968 s.51(1) was, in relation to an offender aged between 16 and 18, subject to a minimum sentence of three years' detention under the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 s.91, unless there were exceptional circumstances. Discount for a guilty plea could not be given if the effect was to reduce the sentence below the minimum term.
Although a 50-month term of imprisonment imposed on an offender who had beaten and threatened to kill his girlfriend, threatened to kill her mother, assaulted a 14-year-old boy, had a knife and knuckleduster in his possession, and had threatened to petrol bomb and pour boiling water over police officers was lenient, the Court of Appeal, if sentencing him, would have imposed a sentence one year longer, and so the difference was not such as to make the sentence unduly lenient or justify the court's intervention.
CA (Crim Div) (Holroyde LJ, William Davis J, Judge Goldstone QC)
21 February 2019
An extended sentence of 20 years, comprising a 17-year custodial term and a three-year extended licence period, imposed on a young offender following guilty pleas to manslaughter, threats to kill, affray, criminal damage and having offensive weapons, namely acid and a lethally adapted Samurai sword, was not manifestly excessive. The series of offences had been wicked and committed without regard for life or limb and the offender had demonstrated a serious level of criminal maturity.
CA (Crim Div) (Holroyde LJ, Martin Spencer J, Judge Wall QC)
5 February 2019
A sentence of 12 months' immediate imprisonment for an offender who had pleaded guilty to affray arising from an altercation between football supporters should have been suspended. Had the judge obtained a pre-sentence report and correctly considered the relevant sentencing guidelines, the sentence would have been suspended as the offender had a realistic prospect of rehabilitation, a strong personal mitigation and immediate custody had significant harmful impact on his dependents.
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, Lavender J, Nicholas Blake QC)
18 October 2017
A sentence of four years' imprisonment was appropriate in the case of a 25-year-old gang member who had pleaded guilty to firing an imitation firearm at rival gang members during a street fight. Although gang members had to understand that the use of imitation firearms would be severely punished, the offender's lack of previous convictions made a longer sentence inappropriate.
CA (Crim Div) (Burnett LJ, Simler J, William Davis J)
21 September 2016
In a trial of counts of affray and attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent arising out of the defendant's altercation with some police officers, the judge had erred in not leaving the issue of self-defence to the jury.
CA (Crim Div) (Sir Brian Leveson PQBD, Singh J, Holgate J)
20 July 2016
A sentence of 24 months' imprisonment imposed on an offender who had pleaded guilty to domestic affray was manifestly excessive and reduced to 18 months' imprisonment. While the offence was undoubtedly serious, the judge's starting point of 32 months was too high and had failed to take into account the mitigating circumstances.
CA (Crim Div) (Hamblen LJ, Openshaw J, Judge Bevan QC)
14 July 2016
A sentence of 20 months' imprisonment imposed for assisting an offender was reduced to 12 months, suspended for two years, notwithstanding the fact that the offence involved the disposal of an imitation firearm and taser used in an affray. Although the plot to conceal such items crossed the custody threshold regardless of any history of similar offending, the offender's changed circumstances and sole responsibility as carer for her children enabled the court to take an exceptional course.
CA (Crim Div) (Sir Brian Leveson PQBD, Foskett J, Judge Moss QC)
4 December 2015
The Court of Appeal urged Parliament to consider repealing the various primary legislation provisions relating to the giving of evidence via live link in criminal proceedings, and giving the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee a general authority to make rules to determine how and in what circumstances the criminal courts might receive evidence.
CA (Crim Div) (Beatson LJ, Goss J, Judge Goldstone QC)
6 October 2015
A judge had been correct to conclude that a burglary fell at the top of category 1 of the sentencing guidelines where the offender had ransacked a home over several days, broken through the roof in an attempt to escape police, and thrown roof tiles at cars below. A sentence of five-years-and-four-months' imprisonment imposed after a late guilty plea, along with the activation of a 12-month suspended sentence, ordered to run consecutively, was not manifestly excessive.
CA (NI) (Higgins LJ, McLaughlin J, Sir Anthony Hart)
3 July 2015
Appeals against conviction and sentence for offences of murder, attempted murder and affray were dismissed where the presence of aggravating factors consisting of pre-meditation, the use of a knife, a record of violent offending and the devastating effect of the victim's death on his family, were not balanced by any mitigating factors which might have presented a reason for the downward variation of the higher starting point set out in the practice Statement adopted in R. v McCandless (Trevor)  NICA 1,  N.I. 269.
CA (Crim Div) (Hallett LJ, Haddon-Cave J, Patterson J)
1 April 2015
A judge had not erred by failing to provide a Turnbull direction when a jury was invited to identify an offender based on a photograph and the accused's appearance in the dock. There was no invariable or inflexible rule in such cases that a jury had to be expressly warned of the risk that it might make a mistaken identification.
CA (Crim Div) (Burnett LJ, Gilbart J, Judge Griffith-Jones)
10 March 2015
A total sentence of three years and six months' imprisonment was appropriate following pleas of guilty to having a bladed article, arson, affray and harassment. Following the break-up of his marriage, the offender had threatened his wife with a knife, attempted to strangle her with a piece of string and set fire to her car. The offences were nasty, but there had been no allegation of intending or being reckless as to whether life would be endangered and his wife had been left with no significant injury.
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, Stewart J, Lewis J)
26 February 2015
Offenders' convictions for a joint enterprise murder were quashed and substituted for convictions for manslaughter and affray, where it was not clear that they both had the common intention to kill or cause serious harm.
A sentence of eight-and-a-half years' imprisonment imposed on one member of a drunken sectarian mob for, among other things, grievous bodily harm with intent would be maintained, but a sentence of three years' imprisonment imposed on another member of that mob for affray would be reduced to one year's imprisonment in view of a disparity with the sentence imposed on a co-defendant.
CA (Crim Div) (Treacy LJ, Simler J, Judge Bevan QC)
29 July 2014
It had been appropriate to sentence two out of ten co-defendants to custodial sentences of imprisonment for violent disorder at a football match as their behaviour had been more aggressive than the others and they were not of previous good character. However, to avoid double-counting in respect of offences of violent disorder and affray by one of the defendants, it was better to treat the whole episode as a single event, with a starting point of three years' imprisonment for violent disorder, and a consecutive sentence for affray.
The purpose of a Newton hearing was to resolve substantial conflict as to facts which might affect sentence. Therefore, where a defendant had admitted certain facts and pleaded guilty to an alternative offence, there was no need at a Newton hearing for the court to make a finding in relation to the undisputed facts or to address the question of the defendant's admitted guilt.
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, Nicol J, Judge Elgan Edwards DL (Recorder of Chester))
22 November 2013
A starting point of over 12 months' imprisonment for affray was appropriate where, even though the judge had not been aware of the defendant's basis of plea which maintained self-defence, the serious consequences to the victim could not wholly be set aside. It was important that a defendant had his basis of plea in writing so that the Crown and the judge were aware of what he was prepared to admit.
CA (Crim Div) (Sharp J DBE, Griffith Williams J, Lindblom J)
19 November 2013
In a trial in which the defendant faced charges of assault and affray following a confrontation with a group of plumbers over a missing laptop, the judge had not erred in refusing applications to adduce bad character evidence in relation to two of the plumbers. Although the evidence was potentially relevant in determining the aggressor, it lacked probative value.
An offender who was mistakenly committed to the Crown Court for sentencing under the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 s.6 rather than s.4 did not have a legitimate expectation that a maximum six-month sentence of imprisonment would be imposed. His committal was for sentencing of one offence and trial for a related offence, both being either way offences, and the Crown Court's powers could not be limited by anything said or done by the magistrates.
CA (Crim Div) (Fulford LJ, Burnett J, Hickinbottom J)
26 September 2013
A judge's mistaken explanation as to the length of time an offender would serve in custody for an offence of wounding with intent did not render the sentence unfair, but the aggravating factors the judge identified did not justify a sentence so far in excess of the starting point.
CA (Crim Div) (Rafferty LJ, Griffith Williams J, Thirlwall J)
13 August 2013
A jury had not given inconsistent verdicts by acquitting two offenders of possession of an offensive weapon but convicting them of an affray during which they had threatened the victims with weapons. The jury must have been sure that they had used weapons, but could have been unsure about the nature of the weapons and which offender had wielded which weapon.
A 35-year-old criminally-experienced offender who had made a random and unprovoked attack on a security officer during a drunken group rampage through a family holiday resort had falsely alleged that the officer had attacked him and had failed to admit the offence until the plea and case management conference showed CCTV evidence. The sentence had properly reflected the offending and the full discount for the guilty plea had been overgenerous.
A magistrates' court had been entitled to take into account the reactions of people present at the scene of an assault when considering whether the appellant's actions constituted an affray, provided that they also considered whether a hypothetical person of reasonable firmness would have feared for their safety.
Sentences of two-and-a-half years, two years, and 21 months respectively for an offence of affray committed by three men were not excessive, as with several others they had launched an unprovoked and ferocious attack on two innocent men in the street at night causing serious injuries, and the disparities of sentence were justified on the grounds of their ages and criminal records.
CA (Crim Div) (Aikens LJ, Globe J, Judge Kramer QC)
29 January 2013
A conviction for affray was not unsafe notwithstanding a judge's failure to give a specific direction on the need for the jury to be satisfied that a person of reasonable firmness present at the appellant's altercation with police officers would have feared for their safety. Ample evidence had been given that satisfied that element of the offence.
A discount of 20 per cent in a determinate sentence for affray was increased to 25 per cent despite an overwhelming case against a prisoner who had committed the offence in prison and had a violent criminal record. The judge had not had the benefit of the judgment in R. v Caley (David)  EWCA Crim 2821, (2013) 177 J.P. 111 holding that the public benefits of reducing a sentence for a guilty plea applied just as much to overwhelming cases as to less strong ones.
CA (Crim Div) (Pitchford LJ, Cranston J, Haddon-Cave J)
15 January 2013
An offence under the Public Order Act 1986 s.4(1) had been improperly added to an indictment that included charges of threatening to kill and affray but the defendant, who pleaded guilty in the Crown Court to the s.4(1) offence, was not unfairly prejudiced by that procedural error and his conviction was safe.
CA (Crim Div) (Pitchford LJ, Cranston J, Haddon-Cave J)
15 January 2013
A judge had correctly imposed a sentence of 20 months' imprisonment on an offender following his guilty plea to an offence of affray which had involved group violence on a high street, the use of a crowbar as a serious weapon, and where the offender had a striking and significant criminal record for related offences.
CA (Crim Div) (Jackson LJ, Globe J, Judge Beaumont QC)
14 January 2013
Extended sentences of eight years for an offence under the Offences against the Person Act 1861 s.20 and 66 months for affray were quashed because they exceeded the maximum terms permitted for the offences. Determinate sentences of three years and six months respectively, to run consecutively, were substituted.
CA (Crim Div) (Rix LJ, Griffith Williams J, Sharp J)
21 December 2012
In imposing a sentence of imprisonment for public protection under the Criminal Justice Act 2003, the nature of the offender's risk of harm to the public and whether it amounted to serious harm had to be considered as outlined in R. v Lang (Stephen Howard)  EWCA Crim 2864,  1 W.L.R. 2509.
CA (Crim Div) (McCombe LJ, Cranston J, Calvert-Smith J)
5 December 2012
A sentence of 12 months' imprisonment, suspended for two years, imposed for an affray was quashed and replaced with a term of 28 weeks' imprisonment, suspended for two years, where the appellant had already served six months on remand. Had he committed a further offence during the period of suspension, he would have been liable to serve a total of 18 months' imprisonment..
In a case in which a doorman had been involved in an altercation with two aggressive individuals and had died as a result of a ruptured aneurysm, there was evidence from which a properly directed jury could conclude that a sober and reasonable bystander would have recognised that he was at sufficient risk of harm for the purposes of the offence of involuntary manslaughter.
A judge had erred when sentencing a young offender for an offence of affray on the basis that there was a causal connection between the assault and the miscarriage suffered by the victim at around the same time. There was no medical evidence as to when the pregnancy had stopped developing, and no evidence that the assault had causally contributed to the miscarriage.
A Crown Court had correctly declined to admit a complainant's conviction for affray as bad character evidence since it did not affect the credibility of her allegations that she had been subjected to threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour.
SC (Lord Phillips (President), Lord Brown JSC, Lord Judge JSC, Lord Kerr JSC, Lord Clarke JSC, Lord Dyson JSC, Lord Wilson JSC)
14 December 2011
Two men engaged in a gunfight against each other had a common intention to shoot and be shot at. Where one of the gunmen accidentally shot and killed a passer-by, the intended target was guilty of the passer-by's murder, either by virtue of transferred malice, the target having aided and abetted his own attempted murder, or as a principal, having been a direct participant engaged by agreement in unlawful violence.
A judge's decision to withdraw bail was quashed where he had given no reasons for his decision and had not given the defendant an opportunity to persuade him not to withdraw bail. In the circumstances it was appropriate for the court to take the exceptional step not to remit the question of bail and to substitute its own decision for that of the trial judge.
Absent a shared purpose to shoot and to be shot at it could not be said that two opponents in a public gunfight shared a common purpose to commit affray. Although it was foreseeable that someone other than the gunmen might be killed, one was not guilty by way of joint enterprise of the murder of a bystander committed by the other during the gunfight.
CA (Crim Div) (Aikens LJ, Griffith Williams J, Recorder of Cardiff, Judge Cooke QC (Recorder of Cardiff))
8 July 2010
In a trial for an offence of affray where the main issue was that of mistaken identity, it had not been the judge's duty to slavishly follow any particular form of words when identifying specific weaknesses in the identification evidence during her summing up.
Magistrates had been wrong to convict an individual of affray contrary to the Public Order Act 1986 s.3, following her issuing a threat to her partner in a bathroom in an otherwise unoccupied house. There was no possibility of a hypothetical bystander fearing for his safety as the exchanges were personal and restricted to turbulence between the couple, and so could not have given rise to a fear of unlawful violence to anyone else.
The scope of a restraining order should be no wider than was necessary or justified by the evidence properly before the court. A failure by the Crown to properly follow the Criminal Procedure Rules 2010 Pt 50 resulted in variation of an order to the extent justified by the admitted facts rather than disputed additional facts which had only surfaced on the day of sentence.
CA (Crim Div) (Stanley Burnton LJ, Penry-Davey J, Sharpe J)
21 October 2009
A sentence of 18 months' imprisonment for affray was appropriate where the offence had been committed at night upon an innocent passerby by an offender with a record of violence who had made several aggressive attempts to attack the victim soon after being released from prison in relation to another offence.
CA (Crim Div) (Toulson LJ, Sharpe J, Judge Wadsworth QC)
15 May 2009
A conviction for affray was unsafe as it was logically inconsistent for the same jury to have been unable to reach a conclusion on a count of having an offensive weapon where the prosecution case had been that the offender had approached a group with a broken bottle.
A conviction for affray was unsafe and was quashed as the indictment had only been amended to replace a count of forcible entry with affray after the conclusion of the evidence, which meant that the focus of the trial had been on a different type of offence.
Criminal sentencing lawyers and the sentencing courts needed to be aware of the provisions of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 s.247 when considering the expected period to be served by prisoners subject to an extended sentence. In the instant case, there had been ignorance of that provision so that, even though the sentencing judge had accurately exercised his sentencing powers, the prisoner was potentially subject to a custodial sentence that exceeded the statutory maximum for the offence involved.
The mere fact that defendants were appealing against their convictions did not afford them a reasonable excuse under the Criminal Justice Act 2003 Sch.8 for their failure to comply with community orders.
A judge had erred in convicting a man of affray as she had failed to consider the subjective element of self-defence, in that she had not applied her mind to the facts as they were perceived to be by the man himself at the time of the incident.
CA (Crim Div) (Gage LJ, Underhill J, Sir Richard Curtis)
23 November 2007
A judge had directed himself correctly as to the correct test to be applied when considering an application made by the defendant under the Criminal Justice Act 2003 s.100(1)(b) to adduce the complainant's bad character and could not be said to have erred in his conclusions.
CA (Crim Div) (Hughes LJ, Wyn Williams J, Judge Richard Brown)
14 November 2007
A judge had been entitled to impose a deferred sentence on a young offender who had been convicted of racially aggravated assault occasioning actual bodily harm, affray and possession of an offensive weapon, even though the threshold for passing a custodial sentence had been passed.
A sentence of imprisonment for public protection with a minimum term of four years and six months was justified in the case of the appellant, who had shown escalating violence in the commission of a number of offences over a three-month period.
CA (Crim Div) (Auld LJ, Cresswell J, Butterfield J)
30 July 2007
A judge had been entitled to give a direction to a jury pursuant to the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 s.34 and modify it accordingly rather than giving a lies direction. The choice between an appropriate lies direction and a s.34 direction and how to deal with an overlap between them, by way of modification or otherwise, was a matter for the judgment of the trial judge according to the circumstances.
Where a judge had made a sentencing error that had been drawn to the court's attention within a matter of seconds, an appellant could not reasonably rely on any legitimate expectation as he would have been in no doubt that the sentence might well be amended.
In imposing an extended sentence for an offence of affray, the judge had been correct in assuming that the offender posed a significant risk of serious harm to the public through the commission of further specified offences.
A conviction was safe where a jury had stated that they would give a verdict as they did not want to prolong matters, where the basis of that statement was that it was not fair to try to reach a unanimous verdict in circumstances where they had already reached a majority verdict.
Where a defendant presented a significant risk to the public, particularly when abusing alcohol, it was inevitable that a longer than commensurate sentence would be passed along with consecutive sentences, making a total sentence of imprisonment of six years and six months for offences of affray and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
The defendants convictions for affray were safe as the judge had adequately directed the jury on the necessary elements of the offence. Renewed application to appeal on the ground of inconsistent verdicts was refused.
A conviction for using threatening behaviour was unsafe as the defendant's plea of guilty had not been entered freely. The judge had indicated that if the defendant fought a charge of affray, and lost, he would be facing imprisonment and if he pleaded guilty to the lesser offence of using threatening behaviour he would impose a non-custodial sentence.
Where the prosecution had not proceeded under Crime and Disorder Act 1998 s.28(1)(a) it could rely upon evidence of racial motivation in relation to incidents outside the dates of the offences. It was unnecessary to make a finding of racial motivation in respect of every single incident where consistent membership of a racially motivated group amounted to more than mere presence on each occasion. The court could not under Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 s.153 increase a sentence on the basis of racial motivation in circumstances where the racial elements of the original charges had been withdrawn prior to trial.
In all the circumstances, a sentence of 18 months' imprisonment for manslaughter was manifestly excessive. However there was no provocation that could provide exceptional circumstances to justify a suspended sentence. The sentence would be quashed and one of nine months' imprisonment substituted.
A sentence of nine months for affray was manifestly excessive, as the judge exceeded the legitimate bounds of his discretion when he sentenced on the basis the defendant had uttered racist comments, as the defendant had been acquitted of racially aggravated assault.
CA (Crim Div) (Rix LJ, Mitchell J, Sir Ian Kennedy)
15 May 2003
Appeal against conviction, on the ground of unsatisfactory identification evidence dismissed. Sentence of 18 months reduced to 12 months as the judge had taken insufficient account of the different antecedents of the co-accused.
The fact that the judge passed a lesser sentence on a co-defendant who took a more serious part in an affray was not a reason to interfere with the custodial sentence passed on the appellant, which was not manifestly excessive.
In a case where it was claimed that journalists had unfairly obtained taped conversations in a conspiracy to commit violent disorder at football matches, and where the content of the tapes had been agreed and the issue was whether the accused had been serious in their comments, there was no unfairness and a considerable public interest in allowing the tapes to be put before a jury. Sentences were reduced by six months to reflect an unreasonable delay in the appeal process.
CA (Crim Div) (Lord Woolf of Barnes LCJ, Gage J, Thomas J)
28 November 2001
When reducing a young offender's sentence for affray from 30 months' detention to a term of 21 months, the Court of Appeal noted the importance of obtaining a report setting out the offender's progress from the institution at which the sentence was being served, particularly where there was no pre-sentence report available.
CA (Crim Div) (Mantell LJ, Gibbs J, Judge Openshaw QC, Recorder of Preston)
21 November 2001
Although a community punishment and rehabilitation order for offences of possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence and affray was unduly lenient, it was unjust in this instance to substitute it with a custodial sentence.
Where the appellant was not responsible for violence that followed a confrontation between him and a rival football fan a sentence of two years for affray was manifestly excessive and was quashed and substituted with a term of 16 months.
Sentences of three and four years' imprisonment imposed on two offenders for wounding with intent to do grievous bodily harm where the offenders attacked a man in the street causing him near-fatal injuries, were unduly lenient and were substituted with terms of three years nine months, and six years accordingly.
Sentences of 18 months' imprisonment for offences relating to an attack carried out by three men on one man inside a pub were manifestly excessive and were quashed and substituted with terms of 12 months.
HL (Lord Bingham of Cornhill, Lord Clyde, Lord Hutton, Lord Hobhouse, Lord Scott)
8 March 2001
In order to prove an offence of affray contrary to s.3 Public Order Act 1986, the threat of unlawful violence had to be towards a person or persons present at the scene.
CA (Crim Div) (Otton LJ, Hidden J, Judge Richard Brown)
30 November 2000
Detention and training orders could not run consecutively to a period of detention in a young offenders' institution under s.53(2) Children and Young Persons Act 1933.
CA (Crim Div) (Mantell LJ, Holman J, Judge David Clarke QC)
24 October 2000
Eight months detention in a young offender institution was reduced on appeal to three months as this was more appropriate given the defendant's youth, his guilty plea and the apparently small amount of ketamine that he possessed. A lack of judicial knowledge on ketamine meant that no precedent as sentencing guidelines could arise from this case.
CA (Crim Div) (Penry-Davey J, Judge Fabyan Evans)
23 May 2000
In an appeal against a sentence of 14 years' imprisonment for offences of attempted murder, wounding with intent and affray, in the absence of any substantial mitigating features, the Court of Appeal was of the opinion that the sentence could not be regarded as manifestly excessive, particularly in view of the fact that one of the appellant's victims was fortunate not to have died.
CA (Crim Div) (Laws LJ, Goldring J, Judge Pitchers)
22 May 2000
A longer than normal sentence imposed to protect the public from serious harm under s.2(2)(b) Criminal Justice Act 1991 should run concurrently to other sentences passed at the same time.
CA (Civ Div) (Stuart-Smith LJ, Robert Walker LJ)
19 April 2000
There was no requirement, under s.28 Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, for the officer who gave the grounds of arrest to be the arresting officer.
CA (Crim Div) (Clarke LJ, Judge Dyer)
7 April 2000
Two additional years' imprisonment was an appropriate reflection of racial aggravation for burglary, racially aggravated criminal damage, and affray. The defendant's appeal against his sentence of six-and-a-half years' imprisonment was accordingly dismissed.
CA (Crim Div) (Lord Bingham of Cornhill LCJ, Alliott J, Newman J)
13 March 2000
In an appeal against a 15-month sentence for offences of affray and violent disorder, the appellant had a legitimate sense of grievance in view of the fact that there was clear disparity between the sentences of the appellant and his co-accused, and accordingly the original sentence was substituted with a term of nine months' imprisonment.
CA (Crim Div) (Evans LJ, Scott Baker J, Judge Grigson)
10 February 2000
A jury could quite properly consider whether there was, or was not, a joint enterprise involving the use or possible use of a weapon where an individual assailant could not be identified.
QBD (Lord Bingham of Cornhill LCJ, Klevan J)
2 February 2000
It had not been appropriate for the youth court to re-open a Newton hearing under s.142 Magistrates' Courts Act 1980.
CA (Crim Div) (Pill LJ, Brian Smedley J, Crane J)
1 February 2000
The effect of a sentence in converting a short-term prisoner to a long-term prisoner was a relevant consideration for a sentencing judge. However, a court was not barred from imposing an appropriate sentence when the effect of that converted a prisoner into a long-term prisoner on other sentences.
CA (Crim Div) (Pill LJ, Rougier J, Newman J)
17 December 1999
The trial judge summed up a case so confusedly, with unmerited commentary, a misplaced burden of proof, overly emphasised scientific evidence and an unnecessary R v Lucas (1981) 3 WLR 120 direction, that convictions for causing grievous bodily harm with intent and affray were quashed.