While we have taken due time to note the changing social and political concepts which have shaped the ideal of sentencing in the modern era, we should also take note of the creeping judicial competences of the state itself in the post modern era whereby crime control has become a key aspect of everyday life. This is what Stan Cohen famously referred to as ‘net widening’ and ‘mesh thinning’ whereby “populations who once slipped through the net are now retained much longer; many innovative alternatives become adjuncts to established sanctions such as probations and fines” (Cohen, 1985:33). This is a highly useful critique of the modern criminal justice system and a highly useful precursor to the 2003 Criminal Justice Act where a myriad of alternatives to sentencing, probations and fines have been trialled out by a state that has increasingly blurred the once clear distinctions between the legal and the illegal, the excluded from the included and – crucially – the criminal justice system and the community. Thus, we can see the use of electronic monitoring, the registration of offenders within the community and imposition of ‘unpaid work’ as evidence of the perpetuation of the blurring of these erstwhile boundaries between the citizen, the state and the criminal justice system as the criminalisation of, for instance, marriage, parenthood and employment creates an ever widening net for the contemporary criminal justice system. Furthermore, the separation between ‘custody plus’ and ‘custody minus’ that is encoded within the text of the Act bears further testimony to the way in which the contemporary criminal justice system has impinged upon the concepts of both custody and community during the opening decade of the twenty first century.