SENTENCING STATEMENTS

 

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When deciding a sentence, a judge must deal with the offence that the offender has been convicted of, taking into account the unique circumstances of each particular case. The judge will carefully consider the facts that are presented to the Court by both the prosecution and by the defence.

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HMA v Albert Bremner

 

May 28, 2021

At the High Court in Aberdeen today, Lady Poole sentenced Albert James Bremner to 17 years’ imprisonment after the offender was found guilty of sexually abusing children.

 

On sentencing, Lady Poole made the following statement in Court:

“Albert James Bremner, on 30 April 2021, at the High Court at Aberdeen you were convicted unanimously by the jury of crimes of sexual abuse of children.

The charges of which you were convicted involved abuse of 6 different victims between 1993 and 2005. You are a predatory paedophile. You groomed then abused children. You took indecent photographs of many of your victims. Some of your victims were as young as 7 when the abuse started. You bribed your victims with sweets, money, alcohol and cigarettes, and used threats against some so they would not disclose what you were doing. The abuse you perpetrated was despicable. It was of the most serious nature, involving raping young girls, anally and orally penetrating them, and carrying out other depraved sexual acts and behaviour. 

It was clear from hearing your victims in court that what you did was deeply traumatising to them. They are to be commended for their courage in coming forward to give evidence. I have read a victim impact statement from one of your victims. Unsurprisingly the horrific things you did to her have had a devastating and prolonged impact on her life. 

You have many previous convictions, which include analogous convictions. You are already subject to an order for lifelong restriction imposed after you were convicted in 2009 of sexual abuse of two other girls. 

The pre-sentence report available in this case finds that you have engaged in highly predatory and manipulative behaviour, involving grooming and gross breaches of trust, for your own sexual gratification. It reports that you show no remorse or victim awareness, and have ingrained inappropriate sexual thinking. You are assessed as posing a very high risk of serious harm, especially to children in the context of sexual offending in the community.

I have listened carefully to the submissions of your counsel in mitigation, and have taken into account what was said on your behalf in determining the appropriate disposal in your case. 

Crimes of this level of wickedness must attract a custodial disposal. Child sexual abuse is abhorrent and will not be tolerated in our society. 

As you are already subject to an order for lifelong restriction, I have not called for a risk assessment order. You are already subject to restrictions for your whole life, which I hope will provide some comfort to your victims. Those restrictions serve to protect the public if you are ever released, and so I have also decided that an extended sentence is not warranted.  I have therefore decided to impose a determinate sentence of imprisonment on you. 

I impose a cumulo sentence of 17 years imprisonment in respect of the course of conduct of which you have been convicted. In setting that period I have taken into account the cumulative effect of this sentence with other sentences imposed on you, and the totality principle. 

You have to date been on bail for the present offences, and accordingly the sentence of imprisonment I have imposed will take effect from today.

As a result of the sentence I have imposed, you are subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 for an indefinite period; and your name is on the lists of persons deemed unsuitable to work with vulnerable groups.”

May 28, 2021