A raft of measures to improve the criminal justice system have been outlined in the Criminal Justice (Scotland) Bill, published today.
The bill takes forward a range of proposals to modernise and improve efficiency within the criminal justice system, responding to reviews by Lord Carloway and Sheriff Principal Bowen.
The bill includes provisions that will abolish the requirement for corroboration in criminal trials alongside increases to the jury majority required for a guilty verdict to two-thirds of jurors.
The bill also raises the maximum sentence for handling knives and other offensive weapons from four to five years.
This comes on the back of Recorded Crime Figures from earlier this week which show that crimes of handling an offensive weapon are at a 27-year low, down 29 per cent since last year, a reduction of 60 per cent since 2006-07.
Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said this week’s recorded crime figures show that crime in Scotland is at a 39-year-low.
“Taken together, these reforms aim to strike a balance between strengthening the powers available to police and prosecutors, while protecting the rights of the accused,” said Mr MacAskill.
“We continue to take a zero tolerance approach towards knife crime, and this week’s figures show this is paying off.”
Published on aliveradio.net