A judge may decide to publish a statement after passing sentence on an offender in cases where there is particular public interest; where a case has legal significance; or where providing the reasons for the decision might assist public understanding.
Please note that statements may include graphic details of offences when it is necessary to fully explain the reasons behind a sentencing decision.
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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.
Read more about victims of crime and sentencing.
HMA v Andrew Brannan
Dec 8, 2021
On sentencing, Lord Braid made the following statement in Court:
“You were convicted by the jury of two charges of rape. Charge 1 was committed when you were aged 22. Your victim on that occasion was a young girl who had just turned 16. In the knowledge that she was under the influence of alcohol, and incapable of consenting, you took her back to your own house on the pretext to her mother that you would sober her up. Instead, once back home you raped her. Charge 2 was committed some years later when you had sexual intercourse with the victim when she was asleep and incapable of consenting. On her evidence you acknowledged the next morning that you had done wrong. Both offences are aggravated by a breach of trust. The first is further aggravated by there having been some degree of planning, and the second by your having told the victim that there was no point in her going to the police because she wouldn’t be believed.
Those offences are bound to have had an adverse and harmful effect on the victims. That is confirmed in the case of the first complainer by her Victim Statement, which I have considered carefully.
I have also considered carefully the Criminal Justice Social Work Report, and everything which has been said on your behalf by your solicitor advocate, which I have also taken into account. I accept that at least the offence in charge 1 was committed when you were still a young adult, although that does not apply to charge 2. The most that can be said about that charge is that you were much younger and that a considerable period has elapsed since then, during most of which you have largely stayed out of trouble. You continue to deny the charges, but the Criminal Justice Social Work Report assesses the likelihood of analogous offending as low.
On any view the gravity of the charges, for the reasons I have already mentioned, is such that they demand a significant custodial sentence. Taking into account your age at the time of charge 1, I will impose a cumulo sentence on you of seven years imprisonment, backdated to 12 October 2021. I do not consider that the criteria for the imposition of an extended sentence are met.
As a consequence of this sentence you will be subject to the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 for an indeterminate period. Your name has already been passed to Scottish Ministers for inclusion on the list of persons deemed to be unsuitable to work with vulnerable groups.”
8 December 2021