Relocation of convicted criminals to a distant place
Penal transportation or transportation was the relocation of convicted criminals, or other persons regarded as undesirable, to a distant place, often a colony for a specified term; later, specifically established penal colonies became their destination. While the prisoners may have been released once the sentences were served, they generally did not have the resources to return home.
Origin and implementation
Banishment or forced exile from a polity or society has been used as a punishment since at least Ancient Roman times. The practice reached its height in the British Empire during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Transportation removed the offender from society, mostly permanently, but was seen as more merciful than capital punishment. This method was used for criminals, debtors, military prisoners,