Source: (2005) Psychiatry, Psychology and Law. 12(1):194-.Critics of restorative justice claim that its popularity is based on 'humanistic sentiment' and suggest that the process is incapable of achieving its aim of restoring victims and offenders. The current study sought to establish if restorative justice is capable of restoring victims and offenders in a meaningful manner, or if the process simply results in a superficial renovation of the impact of crime. Seventytwo victims and offenders participated in a community group conference model of restorative justice and were compared on outcome variables with a control group of victims and offenders who underwent a conventional court process. Results demonstrate that the process is capable of impacting upon variables associated with the criminal act. Furthermore, it is argued that a reduction in offending behaviour and victimisation impact are realistic outcomes of the restorative justice processes, Finally, regression analysis indicated that victims were satisfied with the restorative justice process asa result of their greater participation rather than their satisfaction with reparation or restitution. (author's abstract).