The suspended sentence, along with the fine, is the most commonly used alternative to prison in Spain. This sentence is generally regarded as a good sanction because it avoids the personal and financial costs of prison for occasional offenders which are not in need of rehabilitation. The main aim of this article is to present data and empirical research about the effectiveness of the suspended sentence with respect to its two main goals: reducing the use of prison and preventing offenders from re-offending. The data appear to suggest that this is an effective sentence in these terms, but the article also raises questions about the need to replace suspended sentences with more rehabilitative orders in some special cases. © 2005, Sage Publications. All rights reserved.
- suspended sentence