Basil John Andrew-Cohen 8th November 1982 Court of Appeal

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.  National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups. Other useful sites are One in Four [C] and Havoca [D]. Useful post on triggers [E] from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog.

Redaction Some reports have had victims names redacted and some assault details redacted. This is a difficult balance-  normally I would think that  I should not “censor” details but on consultation with various people I have taken the decision to redact. This is mainly to protect victims, their friends and relatives from unnecessary detail and to stop the gratification of those who seek salacious details. In addition to the obvious “victims redaction” I have thus “assault redacted” on descriptions of assaults but not on the charges themselves. It appears to make no large difference to the vital information for researchers that these documents contain. That information is mainly names of the perpetrators, past addresses, and the charges they faced – on which newspapers are pathetically inaccurate. If you think that the balance is not correct or that a particular redaction needs reconsideration, please say.

For An Index / Timeline of Court Appeal Documents on Cathy Fox Blog [1]

This post is relevant to Paedophilia around Piccadilly Part 4- Playland Trial and Cover Up [2]

[ 1982] EWCA Crim J1108-4

No. 513/B/81

IN THE COURT OF APPEAL

CRIMINAL DIVISION

Royal Courts of Justice

Monday, 8th November 1982
Before:

The Lord Chief Justice of England (Lord Lane)

Mr. Justice Boreham

and

Mr. Justice Stephen Brown

Regina
v.

Basil John Andrew-Cohen

MR. I. FOSTER appeared on behalf cf the Appellant.

MR. COLIN NICHOLLS, Q.C. and MR. A. JONES appeared on behalf of the Crown.

JUDGMENT

(As approved by Judge)

MR. JUSTICE BOREHAM : On 8th January 1981 at the Central Criminal Court
before His Honour Judge Pigot and a jury, this appellant, Basil John
Andrew-Cohen, was convicted of three counts charging assaults on a male
person. On each of those counts he was sentenced to three years’
imprisonment, those sentences to run concurrently one with the other, but
to be consecutive to a total period of imprisonment to which he was then
already subject. That later period of imprisonment was a term of seven
years which had been imposed by the same Judge for similar offences on
November 28th 1980.

Now he appeals to this Court against the totality of the sentence by leave
of the full Court.

The facts so far as the convictions on 8th January are concerned are very
shortly these. The young boy who was the subject of those three counts
lived in Liverpool with his parents. He met this appellant in about June
1977, when he, the boy, was about 11 or 12 years of age, and when this
appellant was in his late thirties, perhaps even having attained his
fortieth birthday. Two days later they went to London where they stayed in
the flat of a man with whom this Court dealt earlier today. The appellant
there told the boy to get undressed. [assault redaction]

After the weekend the two of them returned to the boy’s home at Liverpool,
saw the boy’s parents, and then went to an address in Liverpool, where this
appellant had a flat. There they lived together for about six months and
further offences of indecency took place. It is unnecessary to go into
detail. They were serious offences. [assault redaction]. During
the period of six months not only did they live in the same flat, but they
shared the same bed, and there was some evidence at any rate, that this
little boy was, at times at any rate a
frightened little boy.

There in substance are the facts. It was therefore a persistent course of
conduct over a period of six months and a little longer.

The appellant is now 46 years of age. It is believed that he is married and
has been separated, if he is married, for a long time. He has a record so
far as offences of this character are concerned. That record goes back to
1970, when he was fined for importuning for immoral purposes. It proceeds
with appearances in courts in 1971, 1972, 1975, 1977 and again in 1979.
Many young boys were involved in these previous convictions and sentences
passed upon this appellant covered a wide range, from a probation order
with a condition of medical treatment way back in 1971 when there were some
30 or 35 offences altogether considered, to a sentence of five years’
imprisonment, which was subsequently reduced to two years’ imprisonment by
this Court. The learned Judge was correct in describing this man’s record
as appalling.

In the grounds of appeal to this Court the first ground suggests that the
learned Judge made a wrong approach to the question of sentencing on both
occasions, that is in November 1980 and again in January 1981. But Mr.
Foster finds himself in some difficulty in urging that ground before this
Court, because he says that he himself was not present at the trial, and
thus of course can have no first hand knowledge of what occurred; and there
is no transcript available which contains matter which could form the basis
for the suggestion made in the first ground and carried over into the
second ground of appeal. Thus we are asked to adjourn that matter, unless
of course we conclude that his remaining grounds find favour with this
Court. It will be convenient therefore to turn to the other grounds.

First it is urged upon us that the total sentence of ten years was in the
circumstances excessive. If we are to judge that, it is
necessary to say a word or two about the offences of which he was convicted
on 29th November 1980. They concern a different boy, this time aged about
14 years. They were offences which took place before those which were dealt
with in January this year. They took place as long ago as December 1976.
But there are elements of similarity between these and the later offences,
for this boy met the appellant, went to a flat with him in Liverpool and
stayed overnight. Indeed he went with his brother. They both stayed
overnight and returned on a later occasion, when indecency which formed the
subject of the first count in that indictment was committed. There after
the boy, with the knowledge of his father, continued to stay at that flat
where the remaining offences, three in number, were committed over a period
of time.

In sentencing on that occasion the learned Judge, His Honour Judge Pigot,
had this to say: “You have been found guilty on 4 counts of indecent
assault on a boy then aged 13½ years. I am satisfied he had until that
time, no homosexual experience and you have an appalling record of
homosexual offences stretching back to 1970.” The learned Judge then goes
on very briefly and succinctly to set out the salient features of that
appalling record. He concludes thus; “Boys under 16 must be protected, and
clearly you are a menace to youths and will continue to be a menace, in my
judgment, as long as you are at liberty. The sentence is you go to prison
on all 4 counts for a period of 7 years, and they will be concurrent
sentences.” It is perfectly clear from that, apart from the matter raised
in the first ground of appeal, that the learned Judge there was dealing not
only with the matter of punishment, but he was anxious to provide
protection for young boys.

In our Judgment that was a right and proper approach. Indeed the contrary
really is not argued by Mr. Foster. He accepts that when it came to January
8th, the Judge there was dealing with a younger boy,
but his contention is that that did not justify an extra three years’
imprisonment. He makes the point first that the appellant, in relation to
that little boy of 11 or 12, was not a person in authority. Secondly he
contends that it was not a relationship which was founded in any way upon
fear induced into that little lad. Finally it is contended that this
appellant, in respect of that young boy, was not the only corrupting
influence.

It is worth pausing for a moment to deal with these submissions. Of course
it is true, in using the expression “person in authority”, this appellant
was not in such a position as a school master, but one would have thought,
and this Court concludes, that if a man of the appellant’s age takes a
little boy of 11 or 12 to live with him for a period of six months, whilst
he, the appellant, might not have been directly in loco parentis,
nevertheless he must have been in a position of very substantial trust
towards that little boy, and he was seriously in breach of that trust.

So far as fear is concerned, it is sufficient to say that while that may be
asserted, and no doubt was asserted, by this appellant, the little boy did
not agree. It is not necessary to canvas the various views, but he did not
accept it. There were times when he was afraid.

Finally it is said that the Judge was wrong when he concluded that this
appellant was the only corrupting influence. That he was a corrupting
influence could not be in doubt. The learned Judge saw that little boy for
a substantial period of time while he was examined and cross-examined at
considerable length. He was entitled to make a Judgment and he did, and no
doubt correctly. He had this to say: “You have indeed a bad record and I am
satisfied you are still a menace to young boys. You are now already serving
7 years in respect of similar offences and your learned counsel asks me to
make such sentence as I propose to inflict concurrent, but I do not feel
able to do so. With regard to the present
offences, it was contested and you showed no sign of contrition which would
have been evident in a plea of guilty. I find there are no redeeming
features whatever.”

In our Judgment, however one views this matter, it can hardly be gainsaid
that for these particular offences dealt with on 8th January 1981, three
years was not an excessive sentence. Moreover because it related to an
entirely different set of circumstances at an entirely different time, it
obviously was a sentence which, in our Judgment, ought to have been made to
run, as it was made to run, consecutively.

One further step remains. When the sentence of three years is added to the
previous sentence of seven years making a total of ten years, then one
ought to stand back, as this Court has said, and ask oneself “Well,
although the individual sentences are correct, and although it is correct
to make them consecutive, is the total of ten years excessive?” In our
Judgment when one has regard to the very proper approach of the learned
Judge, namely that in addition to an element of punishment there must be
protection for little boys, ten years, having regard to this man’s record
and the series of offences which were dealt with on the two occasions in
1980 and 1981, was in no way excessive. Parents of little boys in the
neighbourhood where this appellant lived are entitled to some protection.
That can only be achieved by putting this appellant out of cifcubtion for a
substantial period of time.

There remains therefore the first ground which, as has already been
indicated, in effect spills over into the second ground. It reads in this
way:

“1. That the learned Judge in passing sentence reiterated the view that he
expressed before originally sentencing the appellant, namely that he
considered relevant, and took into account in sentencing, the position
stated by the prosecution that the length of sentence then imposed
would be a principal factor in determining whether the prosecution would
proceed with further trials pending against the appellant.

“In approaching in this way the sentencing of the appellant, the learned
Judge appears to have presupposed on both occasions the guilt of the
appellant in any further trial he might face.

“2. That there were no circumstances in the second trial as to Justify the
imposition of a consecutive sentence, other than the Judge’s stated desire
to bring to an end the series of trials involving this appellant and other
defendants.”

In short on both dates, in November 1980 and January 1981, the learned
Judge was using his sentencing powers for a wholly improper purpose, namely
to pass a sufficiently heavy sentence so that the Crown could then bring to
an end the series of trials which were in contemplation; a wholly improper
exercise of the sentencing power.

It is a very serious allegation, and there is nothing to support it. There
is indeed much to indicate that it is not sustainable. In the first place
the Crown on both occasions, certainly on the first occasion, were
represented by very experienced leading counsel. He has no recollection of
any utterance of that kind by the learned Judge. No member of this Court
could doubt that he would certainly have recalled it if anything of the
kind had been said. It was such a startling proposition, so improper a
device (as it was subsequently called in the opinion of leading counsel for
the defence), that it must have impinged upon the conscious and stayed in
the memory of any one in that Court. Moreover at that very trial in
November 1980 this appellant was represented by leading counsel. He too
must have heard it if it was ever said, and one can imagine the effect that
it would have had on leading counsel for the defence and what he would
necessarily have made of is when he came to address the learned Judge. It
is sufficient to indicate that the speech in mitigation of counsel for the
defence occupies 5½ lines of typescript
and no more, and there is no reference to any assertion of the kind that is
now put forward.

But that is not all. When counsel for another one of the then defendants
had almost reached the end of his mitigation, he had this to say to the
learned Judge: “My Lord, I uould invite your Lordship, therefore, to say
that in view of the jury’s verdict, the tariff should be towards the lower
end of the scale and, of course, your Lordship, I know, will not take into
account anything that may happen hereafter.”, a strange assertion if the
learned Judge had expressed himself as it is now suggested he did.

Even that is not all. Counsel having said that those were the only matters
that he wished to advance, the learned Judge said, as one would expect of
such an experienced Judge: “I shut out of my mind the fact that there are a
number of other charges”, obviously referring to the trials yet to come.

Reference has already been made to what the learned Judge had to say when
he sentenced this appellant and one has had the opportunity of referring to
what he had to say when he was sentencing others.

The purport of this ground must not be over looked. It suggests not only
that the learned Judge having improperly used his sentencing powers or
threatened to do so, in November, was treacherous enough to go back on it
in January. It was suggested in November that he cleared the slates, as it
were, although one slate had not even been put before him, and then he had
gone back on his word. It may very well be that at some stage in these
proceedings the learned Judge may have asked how long the series of cases
was going to last, or what yet remained to be tried, because he was the
Judge, it would seem, who was charged with the trials. That would be
understandable and an inquiry made with complete propriety. But to suggest
that he then went on and preempted the out come and sentence of
of trials yet to come is wholly different and of course wholly improper. We
do not accept that this, or anything like this, occurred. In our judgment
there is not a scintilla of evidence here that would entitle us to say that
we should adjourn this matter for the purpose put forward by Mr. Foster.

This appeal is dismissed.

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.  National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups. Other useful sites are One in Four [C] and Havoca [D]. Useful post on triggers [E] from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog.

Links

[1] Cathy Fox Blog 2015 May 8 [constantly updated] An Index / Timeline of Court Appeal Documents on Cathy Fox Blog https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/08/a-timeline-of-court-and-ewca-documentation-on-cathy-fox-blog/

[2] 2015 May 6 Cathy Fox blog Paedophilia around Piccadilly Part 4- Playland Trial and Cover Up  https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/06/paedophilia-around-piccadilly-part-4-playland-trial-and-cover-up/

[A] Sanctuary for the Abused http://abusesanctuary.blogspot.co.uk/2006/07/for-survivors-coping-with-triggers-if.html

[B] NAPAC http://www.napac.org.uk/

[C] One in Four http://www.oneinfour.org.uk/

[D] Havoca http://www.havoca.org/HAVOCA_home.htm

[E] SurvivorsJustice Triggers post http://survivorsjustice.com/2014/02/26/triggers-what-are-they-and-how-do-we-work-through-them/

[F] SurvivorsJustice Blog http://survivorsjustice.com/

This is all written in good faith but if there is anything that needs to be corrected please email cathyfox@bigfoot.com

cathyfox the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free

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3 Responses to Basil John Andrew-Cohen 8th November 1982 Court of Appeal

  1. Pingback: Timeline of Court and EWCA Documentation on Cathy Fox blog | cathyfox blog

  2. Pingback: Paedophilia around Piccadilly Part 4 Playland Trial and Cover up | cathyfox blog

  3. Pingback: Paedophilia around Piccadilly Part 5 1980s and Operation Circus | cathy fox blog

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