Nevertheless, deterrence as an aim of punishment is stillin the minds of sentencers and the sentencing council, in the 2015 case of R v Brooke (Simon)1 an offender’s 63months sentence for attempted robbery was upheld on appeal because he had intentionallytargeted a vulnerable victim, who suffered from cerebral palsy, and thepsychological effects on the victim had been severe. The Appeal courtspecifically said that the judge was entitled to call for a deterrent sentenceupon reviewing the circumstances of the case. In another case cited R v Thames Water Utilities Ltd,2the courts commented that fines for serious environmental offences by largecorporations should rise and one factor was clearly deterrence. The issue ofwhether deterrence should be used as a sentencing aim is clouded by the factthat the greater number is always prioritized. In R v Oosthuizen3 the judge at firstinstance decided to impose a deterrent sentence due to the prevalence ofhandbag robbery in the area, as women in Guilford were entitled to feel safe onthe streets. However, the courts stated that the deterrent element in asentence must be supported by national statistics.
At prima facie, thisdecision would appear inequitable as the Guilford women would be discounted,because they are a minority, it would suggest that their issues are unimportantlybalanced against the silent majority. 1 R v Brooke (Simon) Court of Appeal (CriminalDivision) (2015) unreported 2 Rv Thames Water Utilities Ltd (2015) EWCA Crim 960 3 Rv Oosthuizen (2015) All ER (D) 117 (Jul)