n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - Violence in South Africa : key factors in the background of young serious offenders

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In the period 1993-94, the first two authors conducted a research project involving a group of violent young offenders imprisoned in England. The sample comprised approximately one-third of those in the custodial population, sentenced as juveniles for offences which, had they been adults, could have attracted a sentence of fourteen years or more. A pilot project was carried out in South Africa, focusing on the backgrounds of young men serving sentences for similar types of offences in order to establish the feasibility of a more substantive study, which would provide some insight into background factors of juveniles committing violent offences in South Africa and offer some recommendations regarding handling and treatment (see Wedge, Boswell and Dissel 2000:16-22).


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