At present, when a judge decides a sentence for an offender, only previous *related* offences are taken into consideration.
Thus, for instance, if the current crime being judged is for car theft, a previous history of convictions for shoplifting or housebreaking or assault is not taken into consideration because these are not considered relevant to car theft.
A single person can become an entire crime wave, yet still get off with nothing more than a trivial punishment for each crime, as long as they remain *unrelated* to each other.
Which seems pretty daft to me, and shows that justice in this country is aimed more at raising revenue for the government than setting the standards that people should live by.
Why is this idea important?
Identify the "developing" criminals earlier, and allow something to be done about it before they get chance to develop into hardened criminals.
Reduction in both petty and serious crime.
Show the public that the justice system really does work – instead of demonstrating that it doesn't.
Get the troublemakers off the streets.