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Volume 889: debated on Monday 24 March 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will introduce legislation to ensure that any person committing an indictable offence in possession of a gun should automatically be sentenced to five years' imprisonment, that possession of a gun without a licence should entail an automatic six months' imprisonment and that wounding of any person by a gun in pursuit of criminal activities would entail 10 years and if the victim dies 15 years, these being mandatory sentences in each instance.

No. I believe that the penalty to be imposed on a convicted person in any particular case should be left to the discretion of the court, within the limits laid down by law.