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R -v- H (Chelmsford)


Case note from Sutton Defence Lawyers

Mr H was charged with sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault without penetration as regards someone he met on a dating site. 

He had the duty representative assist him at the police station where he denied the offences.

He later instructed us and he admitted that sexual contact had taken place between himself and the Complainant. 

He denied that the penetrative element of the allegations had happened but accepted that instead, there was touching without penetration of all of the Complainant’s private parts and that he had made her touch his private parts (against her will).

Having looked at the sentencing guidelines and the enormous difference between a sentence for a penetrative offence and a non-penetrative offence the client instructed us to negotiate with the Prosecution about the potential for a “basis of plea” whereby he did not plead guilty to the penetrative offence (which he had always denied) but did plead guilty to three offences of sexual touching without consent.

We successfully negotiated his position with the Prosecution and also negotiated an agreed position in relation to the sentencing bracket/guideline into which the client fell.

We advised him as to how to approach the situation as regards his guilty pleas because he had lost some credit by not pleading guilty to the penetrative offence at the Magistrates Court, albeit that he had pleaded to the non-penetrative offences at that point. 

All of the above resulted in a favourable Probation Report (PSR). 

Ultimately the Judge sentenced the client to a suspended sentence together with a fine and some rehabilitation requirements as well as free work in the community.

The client was delighted because he had avoided an immediate custodial sentence which was not only clearly on the cards when we initially had obtained sight of the Prosecution papers but was also a situation where the client faced many years in jail had he been found guilty, after a trial, of the penetrative offence.

This goes to show that even in a situation where a client is guilty we continue to be proactive in order to obtain the best possible result for the client in the circumstances. 

Sutton Defence Lawyers are Sexual Offence Defence specialists helping clients in Manchester, Yorkshire, London, Oxford, Newcastle, Leicester and Derby and across England & Wales.

To view more Notable Cases from Sutton Defence click here.


  • Tuesday, 26 January 2021