In the latest in a series of dispiriting judgments, in R v Plaku and others [2021] EWCA Crim 568, [2021] All ER (D) 56 (Apr) the court considered the question of when the maximum one-third reduction should be applied to a sentence in the Crown Court. The decision will cause considerable difficulties for defence practitioners and judges, and should be of concern to anyone who cares about having an effective and proportionate system of sentencing.

Russell-Cooke crime partner Martin Rackstraw comments in New Law Journal that decisions which lengthen sentences for no obvious reason will not help the already critically overburdened UK prison system.

Plaku: a missed opportunity? is available to read on the New Law Journal website via subscription. 

Martin is a partner in the fraud and criminal litigation team. He represents individuals facing serious allegations, particularly homicide, sexual allegations and drug matters. He is experienced in advising professionals who face criminal allegations, such as teachers, journalists, lawyers, accountants and company officers. He has also worked on cases involving historic sexual allegations and has been instructed in sensitive cases involving allegations of assisting or encouraging suicide. He defends in police investigations and prosecutions, but also has an interest, and expertise, in investigating and challenging convictions in miscarriage of justice cases.