“This deeply affected a number of them and adds to the cruelty displayed in this horrible crime.
Posted on 20/04/2017 at 15:09 | Permalink
Two attackers who carried out a violent, transphobic robbery on a man in Aylesbury have today (18 April) been jailed.
On 25 July 2016, the victim was approached by a group of males, who verbally abused him for being transgender, assaulted him and stole his wallet and mobile phone.
The victim sustained serious injuries in the attack including a fractured skull, a brain aneurysm and a puncture wound to his left cheek.
The CPS prosecuted the case as a transphobic hate crime from the outset. When the victim was unable to give evidence due to the physical and psychological effects of the assault, prosecutors successfully applied to have his police statement read out in court. Upon conviction, the judge determined that the case should be sentenced as a hate crime and an uplift of six months was today applied in relation to the ringleader of the attack.
Kaviraj Choolun from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said:
“Tackling hate crime is a priority for the CPS and offenders can expect to have their sentences increased.
“I hope this successful prosecution, and today’s sentences, will encourage victims to come forward. We work closely with our partners, as we did with Thames Valley police in this case, to ensure that criminals motivated by hate feel the full force of the law.
“We hope that the victim, who has shown great courage throughout this process, continues with his recovery. Our thoughts are with him at this time.”
Owen Wise, who was aged just 16 at the time of the incident, can be named after the judge decided to lift reporting restrictions. He acted as the ringleader and pleaded guilty to robbery and possession of a bladed article, but denied targeting the victim due to vulnerability and claimed to have only hit him once. Today the 17-year-old was sentenced at Aylesbury Crown Court to five years and 10 months in jail.
This sentence included a six-month uplift for the hate-fuelled nature of the offences. The judge praised CPS advocate Nigel Ogborne for his assistance in ensuring that Wise’s sentence was extended.
Michael Thorpe, 21, did not use any violence during the incident, but was part of the group when the robbery took place. He admitted to stealing the victim’s mobile phone during the robbery and pleaded guilty to theft.
He was sentenced to two years and three months imprisonment. Both defendants are from Aylesbury.
Note to Editors:
Kaviraj Choolun is a Senior Crown Prosecutor on the Thames Valley Crown Court Team at Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service.
Posted on 18/04/2017 at 15:49 | Permalink
Six members of a drugs gang which conspired to supply cocaine worth millions of pounds in London have been jailed for a combined total of 102 years today (7 April).
Florentino Gonzalez, 48, and Edwin Abazi, 31, were convicted of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs following a three-week trial at Blackfriars Crown Court which concluded last month. Bajram Elezi, 34, was convicted of one count of possession of a Class A drug with intent to supply at the trial, while three other men pleaded guilty to similar charges.
The trial heard how the gang arranged for drugs to be supplied from apartment blocks in Canary Wharf and London Bridge. In total 30kg of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £3.6million, was seized from the gang by officers.
During the investigation members of the gang were found in possession of varying amounts of cocaine or cash, including more than £125,000 which was found in a hidden compartment in a Bentley driven by Gonzalez.
Today, Gonzalez was sentenced to 24 years in prison for his role in the scheme, with five other men jailed for between eight and 21 years each.
Laura Tams, from the CPS, said:
“These men were involved in a sophisticated operation to supply significant amounts of Class A drugs for sale on the streets of London.
“The prosecution worked with investigators from an early stage to build a strong case, resulting in the guilty verdicts returned by the jury.”
· Laura Tams is a Specialist Prosecutor with the CPS International Justice and Organised Crime Division
· Details of charges and sentences:
- Florentino Gonzalez, 48, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy to supply a Class A drug. He pleaded guilty to one count of concealing criminal property. Sentenced to 24 years in prison.
- Edwin Abazi, 31, was found guilty of conspiracy to supply a Class A drug. Sentenced to 21 years in prison.
- Bajram Elezi, 34, was found guilty of one count of possession of a Class A drug with intent to supply. Sentenced to 8 years in prison.
- Armand Cuni, 39, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply a Class A drug. Sentenced to 22 years in prison.
- Saimir Byberi, 30, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to supply a Class A drug. Sentenced to 15 years in prison.
- Yeton Cera, 26, pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of a Class A drug with intent to supply. Also pleaded guilty to possession of a false identity document. Sentenced to 12 years in prison.
Posted on 07/04/2017 at 12:56 | Permalink
A former teacher and charity worker has today (Thu 30 Mar) been jailed for a string of sex offences spanning almost 30 years.
Colin Gregg, 75, was found guilty after trial of nine counts of indecent assault. The charges relate to offences against four separate victims, spanning around three decades from the 1960s through to the 1990s. Each of the complainants in the case was under 15 years of age at the time the offences took place.
Today the judge at Newcastle Crown Court sentenced him to 13-and-a-half years in prison.
John Dilworth, from the CPS, said:
“Colin Gregg appeared to be a successful businessman, respected teacher and committed charity worker. But he exploited his position in society to abuse young boys.
“I would like to praise the bravery of his victims whose evidence allowed prosecutors to build a compelling case against Gregg, leading to his conviction. I hope today’s sentence brings them a sense of justice.”
Notes to Editors
· John Dilworth is Acting Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS North East
· Colin Gregg is son of the founder of Greggs’ bakery
Posted on 30/03/2017 at 15:06 | Permalink
A senior doctor who wrongly claimed almost £24,000 in overtime has been given a suspended prison sentence today (Tue 28 Mar).
Consultant radiologist John Coffey, 53, admitted fraud by false representation part-way through his trial at Preston Crown Court in February 2017.
The court heard how Coffey reviewed hundreds of x-rays during his working day but waited until after 5pm to enter the work on the NHS system, thereby triggering overtime payments.
Today at Preston Crown Court, Coffey was sentenced to 15 months in custody, suspended for two years. He was also ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and costs of £14,600.
Adam Clarke, from the CPS, said:
“John Coffey abused his position in order to repeatedly claim thousands of pounds of public money he was simply not entitled to.
“Prosecutors worked with investigators to build a strong case and faced with the evidence against him, Coffey pleaded guilty.”
The prosecution followed an investigation by NHS Protect.
Notes to Editors
· Adam Clarke is a Senior Crown Prosecutor from the CPS Specialist Fraud Division
Posted on 28/03/2017 at 11:40 | Permalink
Nick Price, from the CPS, said:
“Criminals will go to great lengths in an attempt to preserve the proceeds of their crimes and Terry Adams is no exception. We have presented our case carefully and thoroughly, and I am pleased that the Court of Appeal has agreed that he is able to pay off this debt.
“Attempting to hide assets and claim poverty is not a new tactic. The CPS are used to dealing with such claims and will deal with them robustly. Depriving criminals of their wealth disrupts organised crime and the CPS works closely will investigators to ensure that we can take back assets from those who look to benefit from crime.”
Posted on 27/03/2017 at 11:48 | Permalink
Four men and one woman have been found guilty of child sexual exploitation offences in Sheffield.
Brothers Christopher, Matthew and Shane Whiteley, and Amanda Spencer and Taleb Bapir were convicted of a total of 15 counts relating to five victims after a seven-week-long trial at Sheffield Crown Court.
The brothers and their associates targeted vulnerable young girls in the Sheffield area between 2005 and 2012.
The girls were given drink, drugs and gifts, before being forced to have sex with members of the group and strangers. They were also threatened and subjected to violence
Peter Mann, from the CPS, said:
“These defendants cynically targeted and sexually exploited young and vulnerable girls. It is hard to comprehend the magnitude of suffering they must have endured.
“The guilty verdicts returned today are a testament to the courage of the victims in coming forward and giving evidence against their abusers.
“This case was very complex and involved months of painstaking analysis. With the victims’ help the CPS was able to build a strong prosecution case against these defendants, resulting in today’s verdicts.”
Notes to editors
Christopher Whiteley: Guilty of four charges of rape, one charge of conspiracy to cause or incite child prostitution, two charges of sexual assault of a child under 13, and one charge of theft. Not guilty of ten other charges.
Shane Whiteley: Guilty of one charge of conspiracy to cause or incite child prostitution. Not guilty of two other charges.
Matthew Whiteley: Guilty of one charge of conspiracy to cause or incite child prostitution. Not guilty of three other charges.
Amanda Spencer: Guilty of four charges of arranging or facilitating child prostitution. Not guilty of 15 other charges.
Taleb Bapir: Guilty of one charge of rape.
Posted on 22/03/2017 at 15:20 | Permalink
A man has today (March 14) been sentenced to life imprisonment, with a minimum term of 35 years, for the murder of an elderly married couple from Suffolk.
Ali Qazimaj, 43, claimed he was the victim of mistaken identity. But the jury at Ipswich Crown Court found him guilty of killing pensioners Peter and Sylvia Stuart, who disappeared from their home in Weybread. Mr Stuart’s body was discovered shortly afterwards with nine stab wounds. Mrs Stuart’s body has never been found.
Throughout his trial, Qazimaj used a false name and claimed he had never been to the UK. However the prosecution was able to build a convincing picture of a man with gambling debts and financial problems who became aware of Mr and Mrs Stuart, having been told they were a wealthy couple.
CCTV and phone evidence showed Qazimaj had been in the area around the Stuarts’ home several times before they vanished. His car, which he abandoned as he fled through Dover, contained his fingerprints. It also contained a number of hairs from Mrs Stuart in the boot and traces of Mr Stuart’s blood.
Qazimaj was arrested in Luxembourg in July and extradited.
Paul Scothern from the CPS said:
“Ali Qazimaj denied knowing Mr and Mrs Stuart, denied being Ali Qazimaj and denied ever travelling to the UK.
“Through their verdicts the jury has rejected all these lies after the prosecution successfully demonstrated that Qazimaj is in fact a double murderer.
“We would like to thank the Luxembourg authorities for their assistance and co-operation in this case.”
Notes to Editors
Posted on 14/03/2017 at 13:22 | Permalink
CPS London reviewing lawyer Robert Hutchinson said:
“This gang made large amounts of money conducting sham marriages as part of an immigration scam involving flying Lithuanian women to the UK.
“The prosecution case involved looking at suspicious bank transfers, hundreds of flight bookings made for Lithuanian women and forensic analysis of a seized laptop containing crib sheets of questions likely to be asked in immigration interviews.
“We showed that the claim made by Lina Kezelyte that this was a legitimate international dating agency did not stand up to scrutiny. This case shows that anyone who tries to circumvent UK immigration law in this way will face prosecution with a strong case put before the court.”
Posted on 10/03/2017 at 17:30 | Permalink
Police body-worn video evidence has been used to prosecute a man who assaulted a woman and a boy.
Although both victims of Ansu Jallow, 43 (DOB: 16/03/1973), spoke to police after the assaults on 7 July 2016 at their home in south London, they later felt unable to give evidence in court.
Magistrates, however, allowed footage recorded by officers straight after the attack to be played in Jallow’s trial at Wimbledon Magistrates’ Court.
In the video the woman described how Jallow grabbed her by the hair, and repeatedly hit her head, before punching the boy when he intervened. Jallow was convicted of two counts of assault and was today (March 10) sentenced to a three-month suspended prison sentence for each of the two assaults to be served concurrently, given a 150 hours unpaid work requirement and ordered to pay £620 in costs.
Safira Afzal from the CPS said:
“This was a nasty case of domestic abuse and the victims’ credible and truthful account of what happened, which was captured on video very soon after the attack, was central to the prosecution case.
“We know these can be difficult and sensitive cases to put before a court and victims are sometimes reticent to support prosecutions for a variety of reasons.
“This case proves there are new and compelling ways to present cases and achieve justice for victims.”
-- ENDS --
Notes to editors
Posted on 10/03/2017 at 16:34 | Permalink