News story

Child sex offender sent to prison after suspended sentence is overturned

The Court of Appeal today sentenced child sex offender Matthew Ian Bell to 3 years in prison after overturning his original suspended sentence.

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At Hull Crown Court in September last year, Bell, a cub-scout leader, pleaded guilty to having sexually assaulted a child in his care. He also pleaded guilty to offences of making and possessing indecent images of children. He was subsequently sentenced to two years’ imprisonment suspended for two years and was also made the subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for 10 years.

The Solicitor General, Robert Buckland QC MP referred that sentence to the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme. Speaking after today’s hearing he said:

“The original sentence did not reflect the severity of the offences committed by Bell. He was placed in a position of trust which he clearly abused, and a suspended sentence was not warranted in those circumstances.”

Published 27 January 2016