JUST carrying a blade on school grounds can land a pupil with up to four years in custody.
Youth defendants, those aged 10 to 17, can be charged with either possession of an article with blade or point or possession of an offensive weapon on school grounds.
A youth convicted of their first ‘threatening with a knife offence’ faces a four-month minimum mandatory detention and training order sentence. A child convicted of possession of a knife for a second time faces a four-month minimum mandatory sentence.
Both offences carry a maximum four-year term.
Children convicted twice of possession or threatening offences face a mandatory minimum four-month detention and training order.
But judges can waive mandatory terms if they are satisfied it would be ‘unjust to do so’.
Children aged 16 to 17 caught with prohibited weapons – including firearms – are subject to a three-year minimum term.