Backdating child

The present case calls upon us to consider the situation where it is not a juvenile offender facing sentencing but the primary caregiver of a child.In these circumstances, does the new constitutional order require a fresh approach to sentencing?We are grateful to all the above persons for the careful and methodical manner in which they undertook their tasks.In matters concerning children it is important that courts be furnished with the best quality of information that can reasonably be obtained in the circumstances.This is not merely a formula, nor a judicial incantation, the mere stating whereof satisfies the requirements.What is necessary is that the Court shall consider, and try to balance evenly, the nature and circumstances of the offence, the characteristics of the offender and his circumstances and the impact of the crime on the community, its welfare and concern.” in the assessment of an appropriate sentence the court is also required to have regard to the main purposes of punishment, namely, its deterrent, preventive, reformative and retributive aspects.When considering whether to impose imprisonment on the primary caregiver of young children, did the courts below pay sufficient attention to the constitutional provision that in all matters concerning children, the children’s interests shall be paramount?

The Court took all the counts together for purposes of sentence. The Court asked for a correctional supervision report.The National Director of Public Prosecution replied that current sentencing procedures in the courts already took account of the interests of children, and that on the facts of the case the decision of the High Court should not be interfered with.Counsel for the Department of Social Development and the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development adopted a similar position, submitting a comprehensive report from a team of social workers to assist the Court.In 1996 she was convicted of fraud and sentenced to a fine coupled with a term of imprisonment that was suspended for five years.In 1999 she was charged again with fraud, and while out on bail after having been in prison for a short period, committed further fraud.

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