Practice and Procedure


PUBLISHED January 24, 2003

Directions given by the trial judge on delay gave no impression of inadequacy so as to form part of an appeal. The sentence imposed was not manifestly excessive where the defendant used his position of trust to commit sexual offences.Renewed application for leave to appeal against conviction and sentence after refusal by the single judge. On the 27 September 2001 at the Central Criminal Court before HH Judge Pagett QC, the defendant ('K'). who was better known as Jonathan King, was convicted of buggery, attempted buggery and four counts of indecent assault. On 21 November 2001 he was sentenced to a total of seven years imprisonment. In the 1980's K was widely known as a music journalist, record producer and television presenter. The complainants were five men who had been aged between 14 and 15 years old at the time of the offences which happened between 1983 and 1989. They had no connection with each other and had gone, separately, to K's home, with their parent's knowledge, following casual encounters on the streets of London. When at his home K introduced sex into the conversation, he then committed various sexual acts with the complainants and gave them presents and cash afterwards. K made an application for a stay for abuse of process on the ground that there had been huge delay between the alleged offences and reporting to the police. The application was refused. At trial K admitted social contact with the boys but denied sexual contact. K applied for leave to appeal against conviction and sentence on the grounds that: (i) the conviction was unsafe as the judge had failed to give an adequate direction on the prejudice caused to K, by the delay; (ii) the sentence was manifestly excessive. R v Willis (1974) 60 Cr App R 146, laid down a bracket of between three and five years for offences of buggery of boys under 16 (iii) none of the four aggravating features identified in R v Willis, were present in K's case.HELD: (1) The direction given by the judge had not been inadequate so as to form part of an appeal. Ultimately it was a matter of impression and this court could find no impression of inadequacy. (2) The approach was set out in R v Brian M (2000) 1 CAR 49 which held that trial judges should tailor their directions to the individual case. (3) The sentence had to be looked at as a whole. There was no impression of the sentence being manifestly excessive. (3) The element of trust involved made this matter very serious and justified a sentence higher than in other cases.Applications accordingly refused.

[2003] EWCA Crim 172