Judges: Child-sex ruling too lenient

A MAN who raped and abused a young boy – telling the child he would be imprisoned if he told anyone – has had his unduly lenient jail term increased. In June, Craig Latham, 46, of Great Whyte, Ramsey, was jailed for six years at Peterborough Crown Court

A MAN who raped and abused a young boy - telling the child he would be imprisoned if he told anyone - has had his "unduly lenient" jail term increased.

In June, Craig Latham, 46, of Great Whyte, Ramsey, was jailed for six years at Peterborough Crown Court.

He had been found guilty of three counts of indecent assault on a boy, and one of indecent assault on a girl under 16.

But following the intervention of the Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith QC, on the grounds that the sentence had been too lenient, London's Criminal Appeal Court last Thursday added three years to Latham's sentence.


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Lord Justice Hooper, sitting with Mr Justice Aikens and Mr Justice Lloyd Jones, quashed the original punishment and imposed a nine-year sentence.

He said the correct starting point for the sentence should have been eight years, which had to be increased because of the aggravating feature, including the planning involved in the offences.

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"We take the view the sentence that ought to have been passed would be in the region of about 10 years," he said.

"The offender told the male they would both go to prison if the male victim reported anything."

The offences happened more than 20 years ago when the boy was aged between four and seven, and the girl was eight or nine.

At the original trial, Peterborough Crown Court was told Latham had formed a relationship of trust with the children while baby-sitting them.

The abuse only came to light in February 2003 when one of the victims confided in a friend. It took another two-and-a-half years for the victim to build up the courage to contact the police.

Latham, who had no previous convictions for sexual offences, denied all the charges and claimed the case was a conspiracy against him.

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