Our brother has been convicted of three different trophy offences and sentenced to imprisonment for twenty years. In addition to the imprisonment penalty, he has been sentenced to corporal punishment of twelve strokes. We would like to know if our brother will suffer twelve strokes for each offence he was convicted of or the twelve strokes is the total number of strokes he will suffer for all the three counts. Is it the discretion of the Court to decide whether to impose a corporal punishment or not and the number of strokes to be inflicted?
According to section 10 of the Corporal Punishment Act [Cap.17 R.E 2019] where a person is convicted of two or more offences in one trial and sentenced to corporal punishment, the Court should pass the corporal punishment in respect of all the offences and not for each offence. That means your brother will suffer corporal punishment of 12 strokes only as the total number of strokes. The 12 strokes shall be inflicted on him in two instalments, each consisting of 6 strokes. The first instalment shall be inflicted at the commencement of the term of imprisonment and the other immediately before he is finally released from the prison.
The Court can only impose corporal punishment for the offences specified in the Schedule to the Corporal Punishment Act. Wildlife offences are specified in the Schedule to the Corporal Punishment Act as one of the offences for which corporal punishment should be imposed by the Court where the accused is found guilty. Section 8 of the Corporal Punishment Act prescribes the maximum strokes the Court can impose to an offender. The maximum strokes the Court can impose to an adult offender is 24 and for a child offender the maximum strokes the Court can impose is 12. The minimum strokes is at the discretion of the Court to decide depending on the gravity of the offence with which the offender is convicted. The law sets only the maximum number of strokes and leaves the minimum to the Court to decide.