Judges should give written reasons for short prison sentences, group says

Irish Penal Reform Trust paper says community service is underutilised in Ireland

Judges who opt for custodial sentences of less than 12 months instead of a non-custodial alternative  should be legally compelled to explain why, a  paper by the Irish Penal Reform Trust says. File photograph: Getty Images

Judges who opt for custodial sentences of less than 12 months instead of a non-custodial alternative should be legally compelled to explain why, a paper by the Irish Penal Reform Trust says. File photograph: Getty Images

Judges who send people to prison for less than a year should have to submit written justifications for doing so, a new paper by the Irish Penal Reform Trust (IPRT) says.

The discussion document, to be published on Wednesday, says the application of community service is under-utilised in Ireland and should be legislatively based.

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