Friday 23 May 2014

A short news roundup

Richard III - The final resting place for the mortal remains of King Richard III may now be settled as a result of a decision by the Queen's Bench Divisional Court - R (Plantagenet Alliance Ltd) v Secretary of State for Justice [2014] EWHC 1662.   Previous posts on this are at Richard III and The Burial of King Richard III.  It is worth noting that he was the last of the Plantagenet line which ran some 331 years from 1154 (Henry II) to 1485 (death of Richard III at Bosworth Field).  This was a remarkable period in the early development of English law and its courts.

For a detailed and interesting post by David Hart QC, see UK Human Rights Blog - Richard III: Fairness and Public Interest Litigation

New Sentencing Guidelines - The Sentencing Council has issued new sentencing guidelines for fraud, bribery and money laundering.  The guideline is issued in accordance with section 120 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009 and applies to all offenders aged 18 and older and to organisations who are sentenced on or after 1 October 2014.

Court Martial Appeal - On an appeal from the Court Martial to the Court Martial Appeal Court, the minimum term to be served by Aleaxnder Wayne Blackman was reduced to 8 years.  At the time of his trial by the court martial he was referred to as Marine A.  Previous posts on the case are at Murder in Helmand (11th November 2013) and Royal Marine sentenced for murder (6th December 2013).  The appeal is reported on Bailii as R v Blackman [2014] EWCA Crim 1029.   Readers of the judgment will be interested to note the strong mitigation detailed in paragraph 75 and the point the Lord Chief Justice makes about there being no need for an additional element in the sentence for deterrence purposes (para 76)where the LCJ stated:

' ... the particular circumstances did not require an additional term by way of deterrence to the sentence as the Court Martial found. The open and very public way in which the proceedings were conducted overall, the worldwide publicity given to the appellant's conviction, the life sentence imposed on him and the significant minimum term he must in any event serve before any consideration of parole will be sufficient deterrence.'

For further on this case, see also ICLR Weekly News

R v Stuart Hall - The former television presenter Stuart Hall has been sentenced to an additional 30 months imprisonment on 2 counts of indecent assault.  The sentencing remarks of Mr Justice Turner are available via the Judiciary website.  Mr Hall had pleaded guilty to one of the counts (Count 21)  for which he was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment and had been convicted by the jury of the other count (Count 19) for which 18 months was imposed.  The 12 and 18 month sentences to run consecutively and in addition to imprisonment Mr Hall is already serving.  Mr Hall was acquitted of 19 further counts.  See also the Previous post of 17th June 2013.

Land Law - As of Right - The meaning of the phrase 'as of right' in the Commons Act 2006 s15(2)(a) has been considered by the Supreme Court in connection with a recreation ground located in Whitby, North Yorkshire.  This case will be of interest / importance to land law practitoners and students of land law.

R (On the Application of Christine Barkas) (Appellant) v North Yorkshire County Council (Respondent)

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