9 reasons for refusing bail 2023

This post covers reasons for refusing bail

Bail pending trial is a constitutional right and not a privilege.

It hinges on the doctrine of presumption of innocence which entails that every person is innocent until proven otherwise by the court.

You may ask yourself if bail is a right and not a privilege why the court may refuse to grant bail to someone.

The aim here is to answer that question by providing probable reasons which may lead the court to refuse to grant bail to someone.

But before doing that, it is better to understand what is bail.

Bail Meaning

Bail can simply mean a conditional discharge of an accused person pending trial.

Black Law Dictionary defines bail as the process by which a person is released from custody either on the undertaking of a surety or on his or her own recognizance.

Reasons for refusing bail

Apart from the presumption of innocence, another thing to bear in mind when dealing with bail is that every person has the right to enjoy his personal freedom.

It is obvious therefore that the test to be applied when grating bail or refusing bail should be fair to both the accused and the prosecution.

Thus, the granting of bail under criminal justice should be a rule when the conditions are met.

Once all required bail conditions are met court has no power to refuse bail, if it refuses then that refusal becomes punishment to the accused person.

Generally, reasons to refuse bail can be kept into two major categories that are statutory restrictions and judicial considerations.

With statutory restriction, the statute/ law prohibits bail altogether but in judicial considerations is when the court thinks it is fit for a caused person to be denied bail.

The following are the circumstances under which the court may refuse bail on someone

When you’re charged with Capital Offenses

Capital offenses are the offenses that attract capital punishment, especially the death penalty.

The common capital offenses are murder and treason. These offenses are strictly unbailable.

When you are charged with unbailable offenses

Apart from capital offenses, there are other offenses that are statutory unbailable.

Examples of these are money laundering, illicit trafficking in drugs, armed robbery, human trafficking, etc.

These offenses are set to be unbailable due to their nature and the demand of a republic.

For your protection

The court may refuse bail in order to protect you.

In some instances, it may appear that granting bail may put your safety in danger.

The offense that you committed, although bailable, provoked the general member of the public and everybody hates you.

In this case, the court may refuse bail to protect your safety.

Bail Jumping

Bail jumping refers to the situation whereby a person who has previously been granted bail but has failed to observe the conditions of bail or has absconded as a result suffers bail forfeit by the court.

The court will also look at your residence and domicile to determine the possibility of jumping bail.

For example, if your newbie or a foreigner it’s likely that you might abscond, especially when faced with a serious offense.

Investigations Issues

The court will look into the allegations that the applicant for bail will temper with investigations and prosecution witnesses.

In deciding whether or not to grant bail court should look at the allegations on reasonable grounds that the accused if released on bail is likely to temper or attempt to tamper with or improperly influence Republic witnesses, thus interfering with due course of justice.

The allegations must base on reasonable grounds.

Possibility Of Committing Another Offence

Another factor that may be considered by the court is the likelihood of committing another offense while out on bail.

Nature of the Punishment to Be Imposed

The courts also look at the gravity of the punishment expected to be imposed once your conviction is.

For example, a person faced with the death penalty if convicted is more likely to escape than one faced with a mere fine.

Reliability of Sureties

Sureties are the key consideration when it comes to bail issues.

The court examines your sureties before accepting them and admits you on bail.

If they are unreliable the chances are the court will refuse to grant bail.

Isack Kimaro
Isack Kimaro

Editor-in-chief and founder of sherianajamii.com. Holder of Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) and Post Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. Lawyer by profession and blogger by passion