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Maria Karaiskos is praised by the Court of Appeal for her written and oral submissions as she successfully defends her client’s sentence.
Luton Crown Court had imposed a suspended sentence of imprisonment on DB – a young man of impeccable character, who pleaded guilty to (1) Trespass With Intent to Commit a Sexual Offence and (2) Sexual Assault on his ex-partner. Maria represented DB in the Crown Court and was able to persuade the sentencing Judge there that there was overwhelming mitigation and a very low risk of any re-offending. There was no abuse of trust and the complainant was not particularly vulnerable.
The Solicitor-General referred this sentence to the Court of Appeal on the basis that it was ‘unduly lenient’ under s.36 Criminal Justice Act 1988. The prosecution submitted that the complainant was ‘particularly vulnerable’ within the sentencing guidelines because she was asleep and had taken a sleeping tablet at the time of the offences.
Maria referred to a plethora of case law which demonstrated that the issue of ‘particular vulnerability’ was determined on a case-by-case basis. Although the complainant here was undoubtedly vulnerable, there was no evidence that she was ‘particularly vulnerable.’ The sentence was not one which was outside the range of sentences which a Judge, applying his/her mind to all relevant factors, could consider reasonably appropriate.
The Vice-President of the Court of Appeal Criminal Division, Lord Justice Fulford, delivered the Court’s ruling. The original sentence was upheld and the prosecution’s application for leave to appeal was refused. His Lordship stated in the judgment:
“We are indebted to Ms Karaiskos for her detailed written and oral submissions, which are to a material extent reflected in our discussion and analysis of this application, to which we now turn.”
The case is reported in full at:  EWCA Crim 896.
Maria was instructed by Angie Deacon of Lawtons Solicitors.
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