Mandatory sentencing: Lessons from the United States

Candace McCoy, Tony KRONE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There are several different types of mandatory sentencing laws. However, they all have in common at least one feature: they eliminate judicial discretion in sentencing. The most common mandatory sentencing law, called mandatory determinate sentencing, forbids judges to sentence certain offenders to anything other than a prison term, usually a set number of years of incarceration, from which parole is either not permitted or is severely limited. This paper aims to describe the effects of mandatory sentencing laws in the United States (‘US’). Mandatory sentencing laws have existed in the US for decades, and valuable lessons can be learnt in Australia from the American experience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-22
Number of pages4
JournalIndigenous Law Bulletin
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


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