The Court of Appeal has today increased the sentence of Redditch rapist John Dennis from 10 to 20 years’ imprisonment after ruling the original sentence unduly lenient.
John Dennis subjected four women to a campaign of sexual violence over a period of years. He raped and assaulted his victims, causing actual bodily harm to one of them.
The rapes were committed against a background of physical and emotional abuse.
Each of his victims described him as a bullying and manipulative and with highly predatory behaviour. When arrested, John Dennis denied the offences and sought to discredit the victims during the trial as liars and fantasists.
He maintained that account before the jury.
In April this year, John Dennis was sentenced to a total of 10 years’ imprisonment for 5 offences of rape and 3 offences of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
That sentence was referred to the Court of Appeal...
A WISBECH community centre has been spruced up by young people taking part in Fenland’s Prince’s Trust Team programme.
The group spent two weeks re-invigorating the outdoor areas of The Oasis Centre, in St Michael’s Road, as part of their work in the community on the 12-week programme.
Participants on the course identified the project, raised over £400 to support it, planned, managed and carried out the work in just two weeks, along with help from Wisbech firefighters.
Steve Lucas, of Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, Leader of the Prince’s Trust Team programme in Fenland, said: “The young people have really got stuck in to this project from all angles. It has been a real learning curve as every person had to project manage at some point, helping them to develop skills and overcome personal challenges to bring the team together.
“The young people wanted to bring some life back in to the outdoor areas and so they...
Is it at last time for the senior judiciary to make public with some force its concerns regarding the removal of legal aid for many defendants in the magistrates` courts and participants in the family courts? There will of course be a constitutional element to that question which I am not qualified to answer but there is also an enormous public interest factor and misreading that ephemeral concept can cause misgivings and recriminations at the highest level as has been recently demonstrated. Michael Gove is already over his honeymoon period as Justice Secretary. Any goodwill he had with natural Tory supporters from his long period at the Dept. of Education is rapidly evaporating. The legal profession is virtually united in its opposition to the latest situation regarding fees. What smooth faced intern in his department who suggested he incorporate into his recent speech that wealthy criminal lawyers should offer to work for nothing thought might be the result? In the past I have had a pro bono...
The general election was a surprise to many. We now face a majority Conservative government and it is clear that it will move rapidly to implement its least popular policies. It will do this in the hope that some form of economic recovery will allow the Conservative Party to ease up as 2020 approaches, when it will then hope to sweeten the medicine with some form of tax cuts to win pre-election support.
The economy forms the background to much of the political debate in the UK. The slow pace of recovery since 2007/8 is what provides the driving force for the cuts agenda. Austerity means forcing down living standards through attacks on wages, benefits and pensions.
We expect more bad news from George Osborne’s emergency budget which will fuel the attacks on our service. We also need to remember that attacks on our pay will continue and are inextricably linked to public spending cuts.
Osborne has been clear about the need to continue with pay restraint in the public sector (i.e. cuts in real...
Yesterday, I was fortunate to be among the few invited to the launch of the new report by the Committee on Standards in Public Life, on leadership, ethics and accountability in policing. Called "Tone from the top", this report sets out to call on the Prime Minister and his government for:
greater energy and consistency to be applied to promoting high ethical standards and for a more robust set of checks and balances in the accountability structures of local policing to enable the public to make a fair and balanced assessment of their PCC
recommendations [which] are intended to support both current and future arrangements. With the introduction of elected metro mayors taking on the powers of the PCC and increasingly devolved powers and budgets, this is an apposite moment to make our recommendations.
Now: I have not read the whole report. My intention is to do and write a more comprehensive review of it in coming weeks.