'New, tougher sentences have been proposed to deal with “less sophisticated” yet “equally dangerous” terror plots.
The Sentencing Council, which draws up penalty guidelines for England and Wales, issued the first draft of sentences for terrorism-related offences ever handed to a court.
In view of the heightened terrorist threat in the UK, stricter punishments may now apply to anyone who is even slightly involved in a terror plot.
Under the guidelines, minimum terrorism sentences would extend from the existing minimum of between 21 months and five years, to between three and six years...
...Under the new legislation, the use of social media and encrypted communication systems to avoid detection would also amount to an “aggravating factor”, lengthening sentence terms.
The Council's chairman Lord Justice Treacy highlighted how the proposals aim to reflect a wide scale of terror offences and said:
"We want to ensure that courts have comprehensive guidance for dealing with these extremely serious cases.
"Offences vary greatly and could include someone who tries to make a bomb, another who urges others to join a terrorist organisation or a group plotting a murderous attack on the public."
Read more: Tougher penalties for suspects even ‘slightly involved’ in terrorism plots