In terms of jurisdiction, courts in canada can be split into provincial, federal, and military courts (military courts, which deal with offences committed by members of the canadian armed. The purpose of sentencing: offenders are sentenced to reduce the probability that they, and the rest of the community, will violate the law in the future (referred to as specific deterrence and general deterrence, respectively) Judges often consider more than one goal when handing down a sentence: these goals, at times, be incompatible with one another. Judges across canada likely hand down sentences for different reasons, even when dealing with offenders and offences that are similar. If reasonable, sanctions other than imprisonment should be considered for all offenders. Sentencing options in canada: while the criminal code provides a general framework for making sentencing decisions, judges still have a great deal of discretion, maxwell (2015) found that severe prison sentences were not the norm.