Sentencing Guidelines - Offences
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R v Kenneth Henry Callaghan
Rape and murder - 22 year old female victim - broke into home - multiple blows to head by blunt metal instrument - initially denied offence - confessed when confronted by evidence - claimed the attack was the result of a psychotic episode - no supporting evidence - higher starting point - age - belated plea of guilty - tariff fixed at 21 years.
R v Samuel David Joseph Cummins
One of several men who attacked male victim after night out at nightclub - higher starting point - concerted, savage, merciless attack - substantial sentence for the retribution and deterrence aspects - no tangible evidence of genuine remorse - conceivable did not intend to kill - tariff fixed at 15 years.
R v John McAleese
Murder - 24 year old male victim - attacked in toilets of a bar - denied any involvement - blamed co-defendant - previous convictions - expressed intention to attack deceased - no trace of regret - intimidated co-accused - provocation not accepted - tariff fixed at 14 years.
R v Hugh Alexander Lindsay  NILST 11
Murder - strangled female acquaintance - dumped body - normal starting point - likely murder due to sudden loss of control - destruction of murder scene - contested charge - no evidence of remorse - clear record not a mitigating factor - tariff fixed at 14 years.
R V David Anthony McElhone
Death by dangerous driving - youth of driver - mitigation.
R v Oliver Junior Joseph Shortt
Murder - female victim - manual strangulation - prolonged, gratuitous attack in her home - set fire to house with the deceased's son (who managed to escape) in it - higher starting point category - tariff fixed at 17 years.
R v William Skehens
Murder - elderly female victim (aunt) - sexually assaulted - stole money - death caused by mechanical asphyxiation - higher starting point case - terrible injuries prior to death - prisoner's youth - guilty plea - tariff fixed at 20 years.
R v David Conway
Murder - 20 year old female victim - girlfriend - shot in face - sawn off shotgun - handed himself in to police - maintains accidential discharge - jury rejected this - no assigned starting point - possession indicates pre-planning - record of crimes of violence - admission and remorse - tariff fixed at 14 years.
R v Gavin David McCartan
Proceeds of Crime - Failure to disclose information - using a false instrument (solicitor) - money laundering - custody virtually inevitable.
R v Henry Baird
Murder - girlfriend's young son who was ill - higher starting point - kicked child twice - evidence of at least intention to inflict GBH - broke down under interview and made admissions - no responsibility for his actions - considered and deliberate attack - not momentary loss of control - tariff fixed at 16 years.
R v Clive Moore
Murder - attacked business acquaintance - multiple hammer blows - body partly rolled in river - later admission on basis of provocation - not accepted by jury - higher starting point - came armed with murder weapon - initially lied - some attempt at concealment - admission of actus reus - tariff fixed at 14 years.
Conor Gerard Doyle, Attorney General's Reference No 6 of 2004 (AG Ref 16 of 2004)
Correct approach to guidance contained in Practice Statement.
R v Kenneth Douglas
Murder - male victim (neighbour) - mistaken belief was deceased's son - grudge - multiple blows on head from blunt object - deed admitted to close family upon realisation - drinking - victim of sexual abuse - no clear starting point - planned attack - armed with weapon in advance - made himself available to police - numerous admissions - led police to the murder weapon - age - insignificant record - remorse - tariff fixed at 13 years.
R v Andrew George Mawhinney
Murder - 33 year old victim (neighbour) - both intoxicated - deceased initially the aggressor - provocation unsuccessfully argued - personality disorder - limited capacity to cope with stress and anger - does not fit comfortably into either starting point - attacked with clear intention of killing - armed with hatchet and knife - repeated blows - significant previous convictions - no compelling evidence of remorse - tariff fixed at 14 years.
R v Michael McFadden
Murder - 74 year old male victim - robbery - savage beating followed by strangulation - higher starting point - pre-meditated and undertaken to prevent identification - previous convictions for robbery - admissions to police - early plea of guilty - tariff fixed at 17 years.
Thomas Potts, Attorney General's Reference (No 5 of 2004) (AG Ref 10 of 2004)
Reference by AG - whether sentence unduly lenient - Criminal Justice Act 1988 section 36 - blackmail - paramilitary background - guilty plea - previous criminal record - sentence unduly lenient - sentence increased to five years' custody and two years' probation.
R v James O'Malley
Murder - 37 year old female victim - multiple blows to head from heavy blunt object - considerable force - could not explain his actions - expressed remorse - clear record - early guilty plea - higher starting point - victim in state of distress having been raped before he picked her up - tariff fixed at 14 years.
R v Stephen John Boyle  NILST 7
Murder - drunken state - attacked 2 flatmates with hurley stick causing multiple fractures - stabbed 3rd flatmate 10 times causing death - higher starting point - had intended to attack victim - armed himself with the knife in preparation - alcohol and anger management issues - previous convictions for offences of violence (including robbery and rape) - tariff fixed at 13 years.
R v David Andrew Nicholson  NICC 14
Murder - inebriated victim - burglary - 78 stab wounds to various parts of body - higher starting point - many aggravating features - tariff fixed at 16 years.
R v William George Long  NILST 6
Murder - 41 year old female victim (girlfriend) - domestic argument - hit repeatedly over the head with a blunt object (edge of hatchet) - claimed he and the victim had been drinking - could not remember hitting her - at trial claimed he suffered from mental impairment - does not fit comfortably into normal or higher starting point category - lengthy criminal record for violent offences - tariff fixed 14 years.