Zenith Crime Current Awareness

Whack Whack Oops – DLT declares his trial a waste of time and money but has the law on notification requirements missed a shot?

1 October 2014

Convicted after a trial of one offence in 1995 of indecent assault of a female over the age of 18, contrary to section 14(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 1956, Dave Lee Travis was sentenced on 26th September 2014 to 3 months’ imprisonment, suspended for 2 years.  The sentencing judge identified that the Sexual Offences Definitive Guidelines (April 2014) were applicable and that the category of his offending was 3(b) – the lowest category for Sexual Assault (contrary to section 3 of the Sexual Offences 2003 as it is now).  He was not required to sign the Sexual Offences Register and be subject to the notification requirements.

Outside court the former DJ declared the whole proceedings against him had been a complete waste of time and money and that even the judge agreed he was not a sexual predator, as asserted by the prosecution.  The judge was bound by the verdicts of the jury, which convicted him of only one offence against one complainant.  The non application in this case of the notification requirements would seem to endorse Travis’ assertion that he is not a sexual predator and that the public needed no further protection from him, but it is only the date of the assault that prevented him from being made subject to the notification requirements.

He was not made the subject of notification requirements because section 14(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 1956 is only notifiable if the victim was under 18 at the time or the offender has been sentenced to a term of imprisonment of at least 30 months or admitted to a hospital subject to a restriction order.  The provisions are different now for an offence of sexual assault; contrary to section 3 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003, an adult offender is subject to notification if the victim was under 18 or the offender has been sentenced to a term of imprisonment, detained in a hospital or made the subject of a community sentence of at least 12 months. (See Schedule 3, Sexual Offences Act 2003).  Thus, the timing of his assault has saved DLT from the notification requirements, if he had received the same sentence for Sexual Assault rather than Indecent Assault, he would be notifying his local police station of his current address.

The Attorney-General’s office has just announced it is considering referring the sentence to the Court of Appeal as unduly lenient. Watch this space.

Current Awareness

By the Crime team