In this issue
Welcome to the Sexual Offences edition of the Crime Team Bulletin
The Vigilante, The Chat Room and Entrapment
Beyond the court’s reach – pitfalls of video link for witnesses out of the jurisdiction
Sentencing Law Update
Acquittals and the Disclosure and Barring Service
Sentencing the hunted and the hunter
A Contradiction in Terms
Welcome to the Sexual Offences edition of the Crime Team Bulletin

Dear Colleague,

Welcome to the latest Sexual Offences Bulletin from the Doughty Street Chambers crime team.  Aimed at defence practitioners working in this fast-moving but complex and sensitive area of law, this edition highlights some of the developments over the summer which you may not yet have had a chance to catch up on, as well as some of the latest “need to know” case law.


Earlier in the summer an important judgment was handed down on the ever-increasing number of prosecutions based on so-called “paedophile hunter” evidence.  Paul Mason looks at the arguments for and against entrapment.  Elsewhere I write about two other recent Court of Appeal cases dealing with the sentencing of offenders who are convicted by such means, and the ever-growing related offences of blackmail of such defendants.


Emma Goodall also looks at some key recent sentencing decisions, providing not only a general round-up of recent cases, but also looking at the sentencing of offenders of particular concern, and Ben Newton looks at yet more guidance from the Court of Appeal on SHPOs.  Also, Sarah Vine considers the position of defendants acquitted at trial, but who then find allegations may continue to pose problems for them as a result of their inclusion in Disclosure and Barring Service records. 


Looking at first instance issues, Kate O’Raghallaigh examines the growing use of extra-jurisdictional video links in sexual cases, and points out some of the pitfalls which can arise for courts that are all too prepared to wave through such applications.


We hope you had a good summer.  As ever, if you would like to discuss any of the issues raised by the authors, or are interested in knowing more about our work in defending allegations of sexual offences, please don't hesitate to contact our practice managers on our dedicated crime team number, 020 7400 9088.  We also run regular training on sexual offences law and procedure. Current topics include s.28 and challenging Disclosure and Barring Service decisions. If you're interested to know more, please contact Maurice MacSweeney our Business Development Director.

Best regards,

Sarah Elliott QC