Civil Offences are trivial offences though punishable by law. The punishments for civil offences are not as severe as those of criminal offences. Civil offences usually attract payment of fines and short-time detention. Some good examples of civil offences are infidelity, traffic offences, non-respect for constituted authority, sanitation offences, prostitution, contempt of court etc.

In a nutshell, punishment for the breaking of the law could attract any of these penalties:

Detention: This is keeping a lawbreaker or suspect in police custody.

Payment fines: Offences that are not severe and criminal in nature are usually punished by the imposition of fines by the court of law. Although, there are times criminal offences such as libel, sedition, rape, embezzlement, money laundering and the like could also carry payment of fines as punishment. This situation however depends on the whims and caprices of the presiding judge and the plea from the offender’s counsel.

Imprisonment: This is a situation when an offender is sentenced to jail for a period of time after a due trial in the law court. Offences that attract imprisonment are usually criminal in nature.

Sanctions or Ban: This is the type of punishment that limits one’s rights to certain things. For instance, ban from contesting elections or holding any public office. It could also be an action of a state against another to abide by an international agreement.

Capital Punishment: This is also known as the death sentence punishment. Offences like murder, kidnapping, and armed robbery attract severe punishment like public execution after due trial by the law court. Coup or treason attracts capital punishment.

Seizure of property: This is a situation when a person is found guilty of offences like money laundering, 419, embezzlement etc., the person (offender) is asked to surrender or forfeit his property by the law court as a punishment for such offence.

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