If you are found guilty of a crime, your sentence will depend on a number of factors, including the type, seriousness and circumstances of the crime.
When deciding on a sentence, the judge or magistrate will consider things like:
- your age
- the seriousness of the crime
- if you have a criminal record
- if you pleaded guilty or not guilty
Your sentence might depend on any ‘aggravating’ or ‘mitigating’ circumstances.
An aggravating circumstance is something that makes a crime more serious, such as burgling someone’s house while they are asleep in bed.
A mitigating circumstance is something that may reduce your sentence, such as having problems in your personal life that have affected your behaviour.