Role of the Prosecutor at Sentencing
Chaired by Professor Julian V. Roberts, University of Oxford
Discussant: Lord Ken MacDonald QC, Warden, Wadham College
The role of the prosecutor at sentencing varies greatly across the common law world. In some jurisdictions (such as the US) prosecutors make robust and detailed submissions at sentencing. Elsewhere, for example England and Wales, their role is more modest, consisting principally of highlighting important aggravating factors. In addition, the public subscribe to a number of misperceptions about prosecutors; for example many people believe the prosecutor should represent the interests of the victim. In this seminar, we explore some key issues and questions that have received insufficient attention from scholars to date. After briefly summarizing arrangements in their countries, speakers from three jurisdictions (England and Wales; Canada; New Zealand) will explore the role of the prosecutor at sentencing and consider a number of key questions.