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England and Wales Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Decisions
You are here: BAILII >> Databases >> England and Wales Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Decisions >> Brereton, R v  EWCA Crim 85 (03 February 2012)
Cite as:  EWCA Crim 85
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ON APPEAL FROM THE CROWN COURT AT SHEFFIELD
HIS HONOUR JUDGE KELSON QC
Strand, London, WC2A 2LL
B e f o r e :
MR JUSTICE EADY
MR JUSTICE IRWIN
| THE QUEEN
|- and -
Mrs Judith Seaborne Solicitor Advocate (instructed by Howells Solicitors) for the Respondent
Hearing dates: 20 January 2012
Crown Copyright ©
Mr Justice Irwin:
"How did you know about the safe? I have had five house searches so far and nobody has found it."
"Firearms Act 1968
A person commits an offence if, without the authority of the Defence Council, he has in his possession
(b) Any weapon of whatever description designed or adapted for the discharge of any noxious liquid gas or other thing .
Subject to Section 5A of this Act, a person commits an offence if, .he has in his possession
(a) any firearm which is disguised as another object."
The court shall impose an appropriate custodial sentence for a term of at least the required minimum term unless the court is of the opinion that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which justify its not doing so.
(5) In this section the "required minimum term" means
(a)(1) .5 years"
"Parliament has passed these laws for a purpose."
"[The defence advocate] also relies upon the fact that, rather lamentably, the lower court decided to sentence you on 31 May for the associated criminal offending which gave rise to the police arrest resulting in the search that located this disguised stun gun. It is unfortunate. It would have been, in my view, much more appropriate for this court to have been seized of those matters as well as this matter in order that sentences could be passed concurrently on the same occasion because the consequence of the District Judge deciding to sentence in the lower court for the offence of, I think, handling and taking a motor vehicle and various other offences of going equipped and so on they are all on your criminal record means that you are now two and a half weeks away from release. That is not an attractive or appropriate state of affairs.
Exceptional circumstances concern the offence and the offender. I find no exceptional circumstances in respect of the offence. In respect of the offender I try and reflect some proportionality and try to reflect some sense of justice and the exceptional circumstances relating to you as an offender are the way you have been treated by the process in this case. It is much, much less than attractive and, in the circumstances, I reduce the sentence from 5 years to 4 years. Of course I have in mind your guilty plea but that cannot be reflected in a further reduction. I do have it in mind along with all the other matters in reducing the minimum term from 5 years to 4 years. That is my sentence."