A plea of guilty is a significant mitigating factor, as it may reflect the remorse of the accused and save the trouble and expenses of a trial. If it is appropriate to sentence the accused to imprisonment, then usually the court will give a one-third discount to the length of imprisonment (e.g. an original sentence of three years imprisonment will become two years) if the accused pleads guilty at the earliest reasonable opportunity (e.g. at the first hearing or well in advance of the trial) . Lesser discounts may be given if the accused pleads guilty after the trial has begun. But all such discounts are at the discretion of the judge.