HMA v William Tucker

At the High Court in Edinburgh today, 30 January 2019, Lord Summers sentenced William Tucker to 13 years’ imprisonment, after the accused was found guilty of rape and other historical child sexual offences. On sentencing, Lord Summers made the following statement in court:

“You have been found guilty of a series of sexual assaults against the complainer. In approaching sentencing I have had regard to the fact that you started to offend against her when she was a little girl of about 12 years of age. 

“I note that you have a previous conviction at Liverpool Crown Court on 17 October 1990 for sexually assaulting a young female. 

“I also note that your age today is 74. At the time of the criminal conduct with which this case is concerned you were in your 60s. 

“The delay in being brought to justice is explained in part by the fact that you were known to the complainer’s family, and by her youth. Reporting you was never going to be easy for the domplainer and I have no doubt you bargained on that. 

“I also note that an earlier trial in 2017 had to be aborted because of the state of the complainer and her unfitness to give evidence. Her mental and emotional condition was attributable to your behaviour. 

“I have concluded that you can derive no benefit from the delay that has occurred in arriving at this day. 

“The victim impact statement speaks eloquently of the damage you have done to the complainer. It can only be hoped that now this trial is over she can find some rest and move on with her life. 

“The time for you to pay for your crimes against her has now come. I pass sentence on you as follows: 

“Charge 1 is a charge of rape. I sentence you to five years’ imprisonment for this crime. 

“Charges 2 and 3 are both statutory offences of lewd and libidinous conduct involving inappropriate touching over an extended period of time. I sentence you you to one year imprisonment for charge 2 and one year imprisonment for charge 2. These sentences shall run concurently. 

“Charge 4 – you were convicted of this charge in its alternative form. It is a charge of stautory rape by means of digital and oral pentration. I sentence you to three years’ imprisonment for this crime. 

“In respect of charge 5, a statutory rape, I sentence you to four years’ imprisonment. 

“These sentences with the exception of charges 2 and 3, which are concurrent, shall run consecutively to one another. 

“In the result I sentence you to 13 years’ imprisonment. This will take effect from 11 January 2019 when you were taken into custody.

“I will make the usual orders in connection with section 92 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 and the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007.”