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HMA V Steven Ronan McMath


May 24, 2024

At the High Court in Edinburgh, Lord Fairley imposed an extended sentence of 8 years on Steven McMath after the offender was convicted of two charges of rape committed against two different complainers.The custodial element of the sentence will be 5 years, with an extended licence period of 3 years.

On sentencing Lord Fairley made the following remarks:

"Steven McMath, you were convicted by a jury of two charges of rape committed against two different complainers. Each of your victims was in a relationship with you at the time of your offending. You raped the first woman around 10 times over a 3 month period, and the second woman on a single occasion when she was pregnant. It is clear from their victim impact statements provided to me that your offending has had a profound effect on each of these women.

Your relationships with them was characterised, in each case, by controlling and abusive behaviour by you.

I have taken account of the information within the social work report and everything that has been said on your behalf today by your counsel. I have taken into account, in particular, your age at the time of these offences and now, and the likelihood that one  precipitating factor for your conduct was your immaturity at the relevant times. These were, however, very serious crimes, and it is troubling that you should have committed all of them whilst you yourself were so young. 

Having regard to the terms of the social work report and in light of the evidence that I heard at the trial, I am satisfied that the normal period of licence to which you would be subject following your release from a custodial sentence would not be adequate to protect the public from the risk of serious harm that you are likely to continue to present following your release from custody.

In accordance with the recommendation of the Social Worker, I therefore propose to impose what is known as an extended sentence, comprising a custodial element and a period of post-release supervision, known as an extension period. That sentence will be a cumulative one which covers both charges of which you were convicted.

The custodial period of that sentence will be one of 5 years. The extension period will be one of 3 years.  That results in a total extended sentence of 8 years, comprising a custodial element of 5 years, and an extended licence period of 3 years. 6 months of that custodial period is attributable in cumulo to the domestic aggravations attached to both charges. The custodial period of the sentence will be backdated to 25 April 2024 when you were first remanded.

The second part of your sentence – the extended period of licence – will be served in the community. From the date of your release, you will be under licence for the extension period. The conditions of your licence will be fixed by the Scottish Ministers. If, during the extension period, you fail to comply with the conditions of your licence, it may be revoked and you may be returned to custody for a further period. The court also has power to deal with you if you commit another offence after your release and while you are on licence.

You will remain subject to the notification requirements applicable to sex offenders for an indefinite period, and your name has already been intimated to the Scottish Ministers for addition to the list of persons deemed unsuitable to work with vulnerable groups.

Finally, I will make non-harassment orders in terms of section 234AZA of the CPSA, 1995 in respect of both complainers prohibiting you from contacting or attempting to contact them for a period of 8 years from today."

23 May 2024