Senior judges have given an overwhelming thumbs-down to sentencing reforms proposed in the wake of the furore surrounding Cardiff paedophile Craig Sweeney.
A document from the body representing 600 Crown Court judges in England and Wales shows they have rejected 14 of the 16 proposals put forward by Home Secretary John Reid and Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer last November.
And the Council of Her Majesty's Circuit Court Judges raised concerns over what they saw as the Government's 'change for the sake of change' approach to criminal justice.
Proposals for reform were put forward by Mr Reid and Lord Falconer in the consultation paper Making Sentencing Clearer in the wake of the trial of Craig Sweeney last year. They included measures to prevent serious offenders being released automatically after serving half of their sentences, as well as changes to increase the use of fines for low-level offenders and impose 'robust' community sentences as an alternative to short custodial sentences.
Mr Reid joined some elements of the media in describing Sweeney's sentence as 'unduly lenient' after the offender was told he would be eligible for parole after serving five years of a life term for abducting a young girl in Cardiff.