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CPS Wessex: Successful Hate Crime Cases in July 2022

|News, Hate crime

During the month of July, prosecutors from CPS Wessex secured successful outcomes in a variety of hate crime cases across the Magistrates’ and Crown Courts in Dorset, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, and Wiltshire.

Under hate crime legislation, courts must pass an increased sentence where the prosecutor has evidenced that criminal offences either demonstrate or have been motivated by hostility towards a person’s race, religion, disability, transgender identity or sexuality. This is known as a “sentence uplift”.

Here is a selection of the hate crime cases we prosecuted in July 2022. The defendants in these cases all received an increased sentence to reflect the seriousness of the hate crime they had committed.

Case Studies

At Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court, a man pleaded guilty to a public order offence after he shouted homophobic abuse at a police officer. As part of a 12-month community order, he was ordered to complete 15 days of a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement, pay £100 in compensation to the victim and fined £200. The court said that this man would have been fined £100, but in recognition of the seriousness of the homophobic language he used, the court doubled his fine to £200 as part of the sentence uplift.

In a similar case at Southampton Magistrates’ Court this month, a man involved in an incident that required police attendance, spat at a police officer and shouted homophobic language at three police officers. At court, he pleaded guilty to assaulting an emergency worker and guilty to three public order offences. He was sentenced to a 12-month community order, which included 25 days of a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement. The court said that he would have been given 15 days, but due to the seriousness of the hate crime, they uplifted this part of his sentence to 25 days. He was also fined £120 and ordered to pay compensation to the police officers.

In a case heard at Salisbury Magistrates’ Court, a woman was found guilty of assault by beating and two public order offences after a trial. She had spat at the victims in this case and used racist words and language which demonstrated hostility towards people with a disability. She received a fine of £412 which was uplifted to reflect the seriousness of the hate crime element, was ordered to undertake 20 days of a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and had to pay £100 in compensation to the victims.

A man pleaded guilty to a religiously aggravated public order offence and harassment at Southampton Magistrates Court earlier this month. He was harassing his neighbour and used language that was religiously abusive. He had already been given a suspended sentence in a different case, so the court activated his suspended sentence and gave him three months in custody for the harassment of his neighbour. He was also fined £100 for the religious hate crime, an amount which the court said was double what he would have been given but for the religious hatred he demonstrated.

At Basingstoke Magistrates’ Court, a man pleaded guilty to criminal damage, threatening to cause criminal damage and a racially aggravated public order offence. Police were called to a building where the man had caused criminal damage and was threatening to cause further damage by setting the building on fire. After being arrested, he used shouted racist abuse at a police officer. He was sentenced to 15 weeks’ imprisonment for the criminal damage offences and ordered to pay £300 in compensation to the owner of the building. He was also sentenced to a further six weeks in prison for the racist language he used towards the police officer. The court said he would have received three weeks but doubled this part of his sentence to reflect the seriousness of the hate crime.

In a case involving homophobic and racist abuse, a man pleaded guilty to a public order offence at Swindon Magistrates’ Court. Whilst police were attending an incident involving this man, he used homophobic and racist language towards the officers. He was sentenced to a 12-month community order, 40 hours unpaid work, 20 days of a Rehabilitation Activity Requirement and placed on tag for 60 days. The court confirmed they increased his Rehabilitation Activity days from 15 to 20 and doubled his time on tag from 30 to 60 days as an uplift in recognition of the hate crime element in the case.

Notes to editors

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