The nation should welcome the policy of the new Home Secretary, Priti Patel, who says that she wants criminals to “literally feel terror at the thought of committing offences.”

Perhaps, bearing that in mind, courts at all levels will come to realise that for many years they have been far too lenient in dealing with miscreants. Too often suspended jail terms or so-called community sentences doing “unpaid” work are handed down for quite serious offences.

Such leniency must encourage ne-er-do-wells to take a chance with the odds in their favour of not being punished for misdemeanours. Reasonable penalties will go a long way in reducing criminal acts and, hopefully, victims of crime will have less need to appeal against “soft” sentences.

Ron Kirby