Objectives<br />To begin to understand the legal aspects of granting bail<br />To be able to peer assess other students work effectively<br />
Bail – the hazards<br />Why was he free to kill? <br />Read the news report regarding the man who killed his ex girlfriend after being granted bail.<br />What are the difficulties that courts face regarding granting bail?<br />
Police Powers to Grant Bail<br /><ul><li>The suspect is released from police custody on the condition that they return to the police station on a specific date in the future.
The police can also give bail to a defendant who has been charged with an offence.
This case they are bailed to appear at the Magistrates Court on a set date.
The decision on whether to grant bail is made by the custody officer under S.38 of PACE.</li></li></ul><li>Police Powers to Grant Bail<br /><ul><li>The custody officer can refuse bail if the suspect’s name and address cannot be discovered, or if there is a doubt as to whether the name and address are genuine.
The principles other then this are set out in the Bail Act 1976</li></li></ul><li>Conditional Bail<br /><ul><li> The Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 gave the police the power to impose conditions on a grant of bail.
Report at regular intervals to the police station
Get another person to stand security for him/her</li></li></ul><li>No Police Bail<br /><ul><li> If the police are not willing to grant bail they must bring the defendant in front of the Magistrates’ Court at the first opportunity.
If the magistrates cannot deal with the whole case at that first hearing, they must decide whether to grant bail or remand them in custody.</li></li></ul><li>The Bail Act 1976<br />This is the KEY Act.<br />Start<br />Assumption that an accused person should be granted bail.<br />Section 4 of the Bail Act 1976 gives a general right to bail, but the court need not grant a defendant bail if it is satisfied that there are substantial grounds for believing that the defendant would:<br />Fail to surrender to custody<br /> Commit an offence while on bail<br /> Interfere with witnesses or otherwise obstruct the course of justice<br />
The Bail Act 1976<br />The court can also refuse bail if it is satisfied that the defendant should be kept in custody for his own protection.<br />In deciding whether to grant bail, the court will consider various factors including:<br /><ul><li>The nature and seriousness of the offence
The character, past record, associations and community ties of the defendant
If the defendant has turned up on previous occasions of bail
The strength of the evidence against him</li></li></ul><li>Key Facts<br />Look at the Key Facts provided, note any area you are unsure of to research later.<br />
Sureties<br /><ul><li> The court (and the police) can require a surety for bail.
A surety is another person who is prepared to promise to pay the court a certain sum of money if the defendant fails to attend court.
The promise is called a recognisance and no money is paid unless the defendant fails to answer his bail.</li></li></ul><li>Restrictions on Bail<br />Bail is restricted in the following cases:<br />Terrorism<br />The Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001, allows foreign citizens who are suspected of being involved in terrorist activity to be detained without trial. Where this occurs they have no right to bail.<br />Repeat serious offences<br />Where a person is charged with murder, manslaughter, rape or attempted rape and they have already served a custodial sentence for a similar offence, they only have the right to bail if there are exceptional circumstances.<br />Offence committed on bail<br />Where a defendant, aged 18 or over, was on bail then they may not be granted bail unless there is no significant risk.<br />
Restrictions on bail for adult drug users<br />Section 19 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 amended the Bail Act 1976 to place restrictions on bail for adult offenders who have tested positive for specified Class A drugs where:<br /><ul><li>the offender is charged with possession or possession with intent to supply Class A drugs
the court is satisfied that the misuse of Class A drugs caused or contributed to the offence
the defendant has refused to agree to participate in an assessment or follow up in regards to the dependency of drugs.</li></li></ul><li>Create a table<br />Create a table describing when bail will be restricted or granted.<br />
Case Study<br />http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/8399780.stm<br />Who will have decided her guilt?<br />What grounds for appeal are open to her?<br />Would you have given her bail or not? Why?<br />What do you consider to be an appropriate sentence? Why?<br />
Case Study<br />Complete as much as possible of the bail application, swap with your partner to see if they would grant you bail.<br />
Activity<br />Consider each of the following situations and explain with reasons whether you think bail would be granted or not.<br />Alex, aged 19, is charged with robbery in which he threatened a shopkeeper with a gun and stole £2,000. He has no previous convictions and lives at home with his mother.<br />Homer, aged 42, is charged with 3 offences of burglary. He has been convicted of burglary on two occasions in the past.<br />Melanie, aged 21, is charged with theft of items form a sportswear shop. She is currently unemployed and living rough. She has no previous convictions.<br />
Activity<br />Exam Question<br />(a) What are the factors taken into account in the decision to grant or refuse bail? <br />(b) How far would you agree that the law relating to bail provides the police and courts with an effective alternative to remand in custody as a means of exercising supervision and control over suspected offenders? <br />