News type:

News topic:
Immigration offences

Published on:

20 March 2024

The Sentencing Council is consulting on the first ever sentencing guidelines for immigration offences. The guidelines reflect legislative changes to the Immigration Act 1971 brought in by the Nationality and Borders Act 2022.

The proposed guidelines will be used by courts in England and Wales to sentence offenders convicted of immigration offences, including offences of facilitation (assisting unlawful immigration to the UK and helping asylum-seekers to enter the UK), and knowingly entering or arriving in the UK without leave or clearance.

The consultation also covers guidelines for sentencing offences of possessing false identity documents under the Identity Documents Act 2010, which do not relate solely to immigration but can be committed for other purposes.

The Council is seeking views on the draft guideline from judges, magistrates and organisations or members of the public with an interest in this area. The new guidelines will ensure that the courts will be able to take a consistent approach when sentencing this wide range of offences. The consultation runs from 20 March 2024 to 12 June 2024.