Sexual Offences | Lenient Prison Sentences Increased | Kangs Sexual Offences Defence Solicitors

Sexual Offences | Lenient Prison Sentences Increased

The Court of Appeal has recently increased two sentences, which it considered too low, under the Unduly Lenient Sentence Scheme.

Helen Holder of KANGS comments on these appeals conducted by the Attorney General.               

The Appeals in Focus

Paul Cartwright | St Albans Crown Court


The Defendant was charged with an offence of arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence between 20 December 2021 and January 2022. 

The circumstances were that he believed he was talking to an aunt of an 11-year-old girl.  Over a four-week period he persistently and graphically discussed arrangements with the “aunt” to meet and sexually abuse the child. 

He travelled to a shopping centre to meet, where he was in fact met by police officers, with whom he had been communicating all along. 

Plea & Sentence

Paul Cartwright, a man of previous good character, had pleaded guilty to an offence of arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence between 20 December 2021 and January 2022. 

He was sentenced at St Albans Crown Court in September 2022 to:

  • twelve months prison sentence suspended for two years,
  • ordered to carry out two hundred hours of unpaid work,
  • attend thirty-five rehabilitation days,
  • abstain from alcohol for three months.

Additionally, he was ordered to Register as a Sex Offender and made subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for a period of ten years.

The Appeal

The matter was referred to the Court of Appeal, under the Unduly Lenient Sentence Scheme, for being too low. The Court of Appeal agreed and revoked the original sentence and increased it to an immediate prison sentence of two years and six months. 

Michael Tomlinson MP, Solicitor General stated:   

"Thanks to police intervention no harm was caused to a child, but this tougher sentence is a better reflection of Cartwright’s clear intent to sexually abuse a child which will not be tolerated."

Jamie Hardman | Inner London Crown Court


In the early hours of New Years Day 2021 the victim was put to bed by her partner after feeling unwell.  The party in an upstairs address continued.  The defendant later went to the bedroom, got into the victim’s bed and sexually assaulted her.

The victim, who originally thought it was her boyfriend who had got into bed with her, realised that it was not, got up and ran into the bathroom. 

The defendant when confronted apologised and claimed he did not know what had happened due to his intoxicated state. 

When later questioned by the police the defendant stated that he recalled consensual kissing on the bed but little more due to drug and alcohol consumption.   

Plea & Sentence

In September 2022 at Inner London Crown Court the defendant, a man of previous good character, was sentenced to:

  • three years and four months imprisonment.

Additionally, he was required to sign the Sex Offenders Register for life and to comply with a Restraining Order preventing him from contacting the victim for fifteen years.

The Appeal

The sentence was referred to the Court of Appeal, under the Unduly Lenient Sentence Scheme, for being too low. On the 1 December 2022 the Court of Appeal agreed that the original sentence was unduly lenient and:

  • substituted a new sentence of four years and nine months imprisonment.

On this occasion Michael Tomlinson MP, Solicitor General stated:   

"Jamie Hardman demonstrated shocking predatory behaviour and put the victim of this crime through a terrifying ordeal. I welcome the decision to increase his sentence and hope that this ruling sends the message that crimes of sexual violence will never be tolerated."

How Can We Assist? 

These two Judgments by the Court of Appeal show its determination to ensure that those convicted of serious sexual offences receive prison sentences appropriate to the serious crimes committed. 

 Often it is people of a previous good character with no knowledge or experience whatsoever of the criminal justice system. It is therefore vital that those under suspicion or charged with sexual offences seek immediate, specialist assistance.

If you have already been charged, or anticipate the possibility of being so, it is essential that you seek immediate expert professional advice and support.

The Team at KANGS is accustomed to assisting clients from every section of society, including politicians, TV and Sports Personalities, and appreciates:

  • the full potential impact of allegations of a sexual nature upon spouses, partners, children and colleagues,
  • the potential for reputational damage affecting employment prospects or business opportunities,   
  • the strain of such allegations which may lead to mental health issues,            
  • the considerable care, discretion and sensitivity required when dealing with such sensitive issues.

If we can be of any assistance at all, we welcome enquiries by:

Tel:       0330 370 4333

Email: info@kangssolicitors.co.uk

We provide a no obligation, initial consultation at our three offices in Manchester, Birmingham, and London. Alternatively, meetings can be held via video conferencing.

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