Client entering High Security Cat A HMP Woodhill with sword avoids Prison

25th September 2017 | Knife Crime News & Stories|
Nick Titchener headshot

Nick Titchener

Managing Partner

police interview

An unusual case that illustrates the breadth of cases and experience that the Crown Court team at Lawtons can bring to bear in relation to any criminal case. On this occasion, our client had been stopped by security officials as he was trying to enter HMP Woodhill. He had been found in possession of a swordstick (a decorative walking stick which it turned out was a sword in a sheath). The stick was seized at the point of entry and the visit was allowed to continue, whilst the police were called and our client was subsequently arrested and
detained as he tried to leave. Our client was in due course charged with being in Possession of an Offensive Weapon and Conveying a prohibited Item into a Cat A prison. So unusual was the case that it was originally reported in The Sun Newspaper.

Careful consideration had to be given to whether it was an Offensive Weapon given that our client was adamant that it was not in fact a sword at all, was blunt and would break if any pressure was put on it. Whilst our client had no defence to the Charge, and he pleaded guilty to taking it into the prison, we were able to show that the case was nowhere near as serious as was first considered by the Authorities. The Crown Court Recorder departed from the Sentencing Guidelines which suggested that for these offences an immediate Prison Sentence should be considered.

In acknowledging the unusual circumstances of the case. Our client was sentenced to a 2 week curfew order between the hours of midnight and 4 am on each charge to run concurrently. The prosecution applied for costs in the sum of £1300 which was refused.

The case goes to illustrate how Expert Representation can make all the difference—contact Lawtons today if you need advice.

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