Burglar who scarred woman with acid jailed for 18 years

25/09/2017

A burglar who sprayed acid at a woman causing her serious burns has been jailed for 18 years.

Gerard Whelan, 46, admitted grievous bodily harm with intent after squeezing acid from a white bottle onto the 69-year-old woman during a night-time burglary in Ilford on 13 December 2016.

He was jailed today (25 September) by Wood Green Crown Court for the burglary and a series of other offences including the use of liquid sprayed from a bottle on three separate days in December, including Christmas Day.

The court imposed an extended sentence, meaning he will have to serve at least two-thirds before becoming eligible for release.

London CPS reviewing lawyer Lily Saw said: "This was a horrific use of acid during a burglary. Gerard Whelan’s victim was forced to undergo skin grafts and operations. She will be scarred for life.

"We charged Whelan with aggravated burglary and causing grievous bodily harm with intent, charges which allowed the court to have the full range of sentencing powers leading to today’s 18 year prison sentence.

"But carrying acid or another corrosive substance as a weapon could lead to a prison sentence of up to four years even if it is not used, and throwing acid, even if the target is missed, could lead to a life sentence."

Convictions:

Whelan, [28/07/1971], of Penfold Place, Paddington, admitted:

  • 13 Dec - Aggravated burglary, section 18 GBH
  • 12 Dec - Aggravated burglary, assault with intent to rob, robbery, assault with intent to rob, robbery
  • 25 Dec - Assault with intent to rob, assault with intent to rob, having an offensive weapon, assault with intent to rob, assault by beating.