The Sentencing Counsel has introduced new Sentencing Guidelines (‘the new Guidelines’) in relation to ‘Modern Slavery offences’, which will come into effect on 1 October 2021, and which will assist Courts when sentencing those convicted of such offences.

Amandeep Murria of Kangs Solicitors outlines some of the new changes.

If you are facing, or anticipate facing, ‘Modern Slavery’ offences or criminal allegations of any nature, it is essential that you seek experienced legal advice and guidance.

We are recognised as one of the leading criminal defence firms in the country being top ranked in both the legal directories, the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners.

We appreciate the strain on those arrested in relation to any allegations of criminal conduct and we are here to assist throughout such a difficult period.  

Our team can be contacted for initial advice as follows:   

Relevant Law | Kangs Slavery and Trafficking Offences Defence Solicitors

The Modern Slavery Act 2015 creates Relevant Offences in respect of:

  • slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour,
  • human trafficking,
  • facilitating human trafficking.

The New Guidelines | Kangs Slavery Offences Defence Team

The new Guidelines will allow Courts to impose severe penalties on those who have committed ‘Modern Slavery’ offences for financial gain, exposed victims to a higher risk of death or have played a leading role in the offending.

Sentences of up to eighteen years imprisonment may be handed down by the Courts.

The new Guidelines will provide Courts guidance when assessing culpability and harm.

The culpability of the defendant will vary according to various factors:

High culpability

  • Leading role in the offending
  • Expectation of substantial financial or other material advantage
  • High degree of planning/premeditation
  • Use or threat of substantial degree of physical violence towards victim (s) or their families
  • Use or threat of substantial degree of sexual violence or abuse towards victim (s) or their families

Medium culpability

  • Significant role in the offending
  • Involves others in the offending whether by coercion, intimidation, exploitation or reward
  • Some planning\premeditation
  • Use or threat of some physical violence towards victim(s) or their families
  • Use or threat of some sexual violence towards victim(s) or their families
  • Other threats towards victim(s) or their families

Lower Culpability

  • Engaged by pressure, coercion or intimidation, or has been a victim of slavery or trafficking relating to this offence
  • Performs limited function and direction
  • Limited understanding\knowledge of the offending
  • Expectation of limited or no financial other material advantage
  • Little or no planning\premeditation

The level of Harm falls into 4 Categories:

Category 1

  • Exposure of victim to high risk of death

Category 2

  • Serious physical harm which is a substantial and/ or long-term effect
  • Serious psychological harm which has substantial and/ or long-term effect
  • Substantial and long-term adverse consequence(s) on the victim’s daily life after the offending has ceased
  • Victim(s) deceived or coerced into sexual activity

Category 3

  • Some physical harm
  • Some psychological harm
  • Significant financial loss/disadvantage to the victim
  • Exposure of victim(s) to additional risk of serious physical or psychological harm

Category 4

  • Limited physical harm
  • Limited psychological harm
  • Limited financial loss/disadvantage to the victim(s)

The Court will also take into account aggravating factors and mitigating factors when adjusting the final sentence before it is imposed on an offender.

How Can We Help? | Kangs National Criminal Defence Solicitors

If you are affected by anything contained within this article, including investigation or prosecution in relation to Modern Slavery Offences, please contact one of our team who will be available to assist by way of 24/7 emergency callout in respect of any situation or if you need to attend the Police Station or either the Magistrates’ Court or the Crown Court.

We welcome enquiries by telephone or email and provide initial consultation at our offices in London, Birmingham or Manchester.

Alternatively, we can provide an initial consultation by telephone or video conferencing.  

Please feel free to contact our team through any one of the following:

Aman Murria
amurria@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0161 817 5020 | 0121 449 9888

Helen Holder
hholder@kangssolicitors.co.uk
020 7936 6396  | 0121 449 9888

Sukhdip Randhawa
srandhawa@kangssolicitors.co.uk
0121 449 9888 | 020 7936 6396