547. Advance indications by judge.

There is an obvious danger that discussions between counsel and the trial judge with regard to sentencing may put undue pressure on the defendant to plead guilty, and accordingly guidance has been issued about advance indications of sentence by a judge in the Crown Court1. The guidance given in relation to the judge provides that:


    (1)     the judge should not give an advance indication of sentence unless one has been sought by the defendant2;


    (2)     an indication should not be sought if there is any uncertainty about the factual basis3;


    (3)     indication should normally be confined to the maximum sentence if a plea of guilty were tendered at