Ask for a crown court sentence to be reviewed

You can ask for someone’s crown court sentence to be reviewed if you think it is too low. The Attorney General’s Office can review very low sentences given by the crown court in England and Wales if they are asked to.
Only certain types of case can be reviewed, including:
  • murder
  • rape
  • robbery
  • some child sex crimes and child cruelty
  • some serious fraud
  • some serious drug crimes
  • some terror-related offences
  • crimes committed because of the victim’s race or religion
Anyone can ask for a sentence to be reviewed, they do not have to be involved in the case. Only one person needs to ask for a sentence to be reviewed.

How to get a sentence reviewed

Make sure you submit your request as early as possible and within 28 days of the sentencing.
Provide as much information as you can about the case to the Attorney General’s Office, like the:
  • name of the person who got the sentence
  • date the sentence was given
  • court where the case was held
  • crime committed

Attorney General’s Office

Telephone: 020 7271 2492
The Attorney General’s Office has 28 days to review a sentence and make a decision. If your request is received after 28 days of the sentencing, it cannot be reviewed. Once the Attorney General’s Office has reviewed the case, they may send it to the Court of Appeal.

The court of appeal

The court of appeal may decide that the sentence:
  • should stay the same
  • is unreasonably low (called unduly lenient) and may increase it
  • refuse to hear the case
Even if a case is passed on to the court of appeal it may not change the sentence.