Residents are being invited to give their views on a new sentencing guideline setting out the steps taken by courts in making sentencing decisions, and the factors which may be taken into account.

The Scottish Sentencing Council recently launched a 12-week nationwide public consultation seeking views on a draft guideline on the sentencing process, which will apply to all sentencing decisions.

The guideline sets out an eight-step process for the sentencing of offenders, explaining how courts arrive at decisions and what may be taken into account, such as the seriousness of the offence and any aggravating or mitigating factors.

The consultation seeks views on the sentencing process itself, on how helpful and easy the guideline is to understand, and on the potential impact it might have.

The deadline for responding is Friday, September 6, and the consultation can be found online: https://