If the Offender is Young
If the offender in your case is aged 10 to 17 and is convicted of an offence the Youth Court may make an Action Plan Order or a Reparation Order. These could include the requirement to:
- provide an apology;
- provide compensation in kind, such as practical work; or
- engage in victim/offender mediation.
This can only be with your consent. If a Reparation Order is being considered, the Youth Court will ask for a written report from the Youth Offending Team indicating your attitude to the proposed requirements. Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 sections 69-70, 73-74.
If the offender in your case is aged 10 to 17 and they are appearing in court for the first time and plead guilty, the Youth Court must make a Referral Order to a Youth Offender Panel. The Youth Offender Panel then sets up a meeting with the young offender in order to draw up a contract as to how the young offender can address the causes of their offending behaviours and make reparation to either the victim or the community. As the victim, you can attend this meeting and be accompanied by a person of your choice. Reparation to you can include:
- providing an apology;
- providing financial compensation;
- providing compensation in kind (such as practical work); or
- victim/offender mediation
Any such reparation can only be with your consent under the Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 sections 22-23. Further, the Court may make a Compensation Order instead.
Media in relation to cases involving children
The Press Complaints Commission’s Code of Practice states that the press must not identify children under the age of 16 who are involved in cases concerning sexual offences, whether as victims or as witnesses, nor allow them to be identified by stating that a child is related to a named offender.