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Third strike drug offence, it says minimum sentence is 7

Customer Question
For a third strike drug...
For a third strike drug offence, it says minimum sentence is 7 years. I want to know if sentenced to 7 years will it automatically be halved or would he need to ask parole. He has pleaded guilty so will that take time off the 7 years. Is it always 7 years for 3rd strike ? Will good behaviour make the sentence lighter?
Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: UK Law
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Answered in 43 minutes by:
12/3/2015
Solicitor: James Mather,
 replied 2 years ago
James Mather
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 22,629
Experience: Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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This is what is called a Determinate prison sentence. It is for the fixed length of time.

The sentence is not halved. What happens is that the first half is served in prison in the second half is served in the community. The person is released on licence.

It usually happens automatically unless there have been any incidents inside and it’s believed that the person should not be released because they have not rehabilitated sufficient to go back into the community.

If they commit drug offences while in prison it is likely to affect the period they spend in custody. If they commit an offence (even a minor offence for something different) whilst out on licence on the second half of the sentence, they will automatically be sent straight back to prison.

Does that answer the question? Can I answer any specific points arising from this?

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Customer reply replied 2 years ago
I was reading online that sentences over 5 years are not subject to being halved automatically and that you would need to ask the parole board if you can be realeased at half way. Is this not correct? I understand the remaining half is outside on license but I thought this was for sentences under 5 years. What I want to know is is it going to be half inside and half outside automatically or will he half to apply. Is there a new law where you get only 20% of your sentence when it's 7 years and it's not halved.
Solicitor: James Mather,
 replied 2 years ago

I’m sorry, what I’ve said is a little misleading.

When I say it happens automatically, the issue gets raised. The release is not absolutely guaranteed 100% automatic. It does get raised for review.

Remember this is done for another reason and that is to free up prison space and therefore if the inmate simply decided to sit out his time without raising the issue, it would get raised.

You will probably find this table useful.

https://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/about-sentencing/types-of-sentence/determinate-prison-sentences/

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