Judiciary Urges Inmates to Embrace Plea Bargaining for Reduced Sentences, Efficiency

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The judiciary has urged the inmates to embrace the benefits of plea bargaining as a way of reducing prison sentences.

Judge Samuel Emokor, a judge of the High Court, while conducting a plea bargain camp at Ndorwa Main Prison on June 20, 2024, in Kabale, and his team from the judiciary encouraged the inmates who had committed offences to embrace plea bargains willingly.

“Plea bargaining benefits both inmates and the criminal justice system. Inmates can receive reduced sentences, avoid lengthy trials, and access rehabilitation programmes,” Emokor said.

Judge Samuel Emokor addressing inmates at Ndorwa Main Prison on June 20, 2024.

Plea bargains are also beneficial to the state, as they save money and time in terms of trial resources. 

He, however, cautioned those who believed they were innocent not to be pressured into plea bargaining.

Emokor also advised inmates to explore bail options, especially in cases where surety was required or the offence was bailable, highlighting the benefits of reduced sentences and remission. He advised those with petty offences to seek reconciliation with their victims.

Yepusa Emoru, Assistant Superintendent of Prisons (Ag. OC Ndorwa Main), welcomed the judiciary team and appreciated their efforts in sensitising inmates about plea bargaining. He encouraged inmates to take advantage of the opportunity and benefit from plea bargain offers.

The judge also commended the prison authorities for maintaining the welfare and health of inmates.

Plea bargaining can be a valuable tool for inmates in Ugandan prisons to reduce their sentences, avoid lengthy trials, and access rehabilitation programmes, ultimately contributing to a more efficient and humane criminal justice system.

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