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Post written by Gabriella Cabrera – “Comparing Plea Bargaining in Uganda to England”

My name is Gabriella Cabrera. I joined the Student Staff for the Center for Global Justice at the start of the spring semester of my first year at Regent University School of Law.

I have truly been enjoying the past two months working with the Center. The change of pace from coursework to gathering information for IJM to use on real cases has been a rewarding experience.

A Lens to View

I have shared with my friends and family that I am encouraged in my studies due to my work as a Student Staff member because I have the opportunity to preview the type of law I want to pursue. The Center offers a lens and vessel to view and aid, respectively, the casework for the most vulnerable people across the world.

International Justice Mission

International Justice Mission is a non-profit fighting human trafficking. IJM’s mission is to “protect the poor from violence by rescuing victims, bringing the criminals to justice, restoring survivors to safety and strength, and helping local law enforcement build a safe future that lasts.”

Project #1

As a part of the IJM Uganda Project, the other members of this project and I have helped create a case law database that served as a resource for IJM to access cases that may be useful when IJM’s attorneys are drafting trial or appellate briefs. They could use this resource to determine the current law and find cases similar to their own. For this project, we researched the courts exclusively in Kenya. In the database, I listed the citation, brief facts, charge, and sentence. The two types of cases I focused on were attempted rape and attempted defilement. These were heavy topics, but the pattern of favorable outcomes for the victim gave me hope that there was justice for these crimes.

Project #2

I am currently working on our new project for IJM by researching the effects of plea bargaining in England to compare with the effects of plea bargaining in Uganda after we complete the research. One of our objectives was whether plea bargaining helps deter crimes. In “Plea Bargains, Guilty Pleas and the Consequences for Appeal in England And Wales,” author Juliet Horne explains how plea bargaining has helped deter crimes by burdening the defendants with induced confessions and making it significantly harder for the defendant to get an appeal. However, the author says plea bargaining has failed to help deter crimes because when defendants get reduced sentences from pleading guilty, they are more likely to become repeat offenders.

This post was written by a Center for Global Justice Student Staff member. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect those of Regent University, Regent Law School, or the Center for Global Justice.