Man convicted and sentenced for manslaughter - Maidenhead

22/01/2013

A 30-year-old man was today, Tuesday, 22 January 2013, sentenced at Reading Crown Court for manslaughter.

Benjamin Frankum was found guilty of manslaughter yesterday, Monday, 21 January 2013, on the grounds of diminished responsibility following a trial at Reading Crown Court. The jury found him not guilty of murder.

Frankum was sentenced by the Judge, having heard evidence from Frankum's psychiatrist, to a section 37 Mental Health Act Hospital Order plus a Section 41 Mental Health Act Restriction Order - without limit of time.

On the morning of 23 August 2007, Frankum entered a property in Cherry Garden Lane, Maidenhead, and attacked a sleeping man.

The victim, 34-year-old Daniel Quelch, was found in the kitchen of the property with more than 80 stab wounds.

When officers arrived, Frankum told them that he had been sent by MI5 to kill Mr Quelch.

Frankum was originally found guilty of the killing by a jury at Reading Crown Court in 2008, but was declared unfit to plead. He was detained under a hospital order and has remained at Broadmoor Hospital since that date. Following today's sentencing he was ordered to be returned to Broadmoor immediately.

Baljit Ubhey OBE, Chief Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern CPS, said: "We have worked closely with Thames Valley Police since this investigation was launched. This case involved the untimely death of 34-year-old Daniel Quelch, who was attacked in his own home while he slept. His life was brought to a premature end in the most brutal of ways.

"The jury at Reading Crown Court found Benjamin Frankum guilty of manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility. They decided that he was responsible for Daniel's death, despite his denials.

"Manslaughter by diminished responsibility is an alternative verdict to murder, which is only established if it is more likely than not that a defendant suffered from an abnormality of mind that substantially impaired their responsibility for their actions.

"As a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, a just outcome has been achieved for Daniel's family and friends.

"Daniel's parents have been left without their loving son, and his children have been left without a father. The CPS praises the strength and courage of Daniel's family who sat through the trial and listened to the horrific details of how he died in terrible circumstances. We hope that the conviction and sentence will in some way help them come to terms with this tragic event and move forward with their lives.

"We acknowledge however, that nothing can make up for the loss felt by the family and friends and our thoughts are very much with them all at this time."

Investigating officer Detective Sergeant Phil Jones from Maidenhead CID said: "We are pleased with the verdict at Reading Crown Court.

"This was a crime which shocked the community and it has taken more than five years for Daniel's family to see this tragic chapter in their lives come to a conclusion.

"It hasn't been easy for them to relive the events of that day, so I commend them for their courage."