HMA V PATRICK RAE

At the High Court in Edinburgh Lord Tyre imposed a life sentence on Patrick Rae after he was found guilty of the murder and rape of Mary McLaren in Dundee between the 25 February and 10 March 2010. The punishment part of the sentence was set at 20 years.

On sentencing Lord Tyre made the following statement in court:

“By the verdict of the jury, you have been convicted of the rape and murder of Mary McLaren.  The sentence for murder is mandatory.  I sentence you to life imprisonment, to run from 16 March 2010 when you were remanded in custody.

I am also required by law to fix the period, known as the punishment part, that you must spend in prison before you may apply to the Parole Board for release on licence.  After the expiry of this period, your actual date of release will depend on whether and when the Parole Board considers that your imprisonment is no longer necessary for the protection of the public.  You should therefore understand that you may be in prison for a longer period than the one that I am about to set as the punishment part of your sentence, and also that if the Parole Board does authorise your release and you breach the terms of your licence, you will be liable to be recalled to prison to serve the remainder of your sentence.

In selecting the period which I consider necessary to satisfy the requirements of retribution and deterrence, I am obliged to have regard to the seriousness of the offences of which you have been convicted on this indictment, and also your previous convictions.  There is no doubt in my mind that any right-thinking person would regard these offences as very serious indeed.  You preyed on a woman whom you had met at a night club and who, by all accounts, was the worse for drink by the time she left the club in the early hours of the morning.  You attached yourself to her when she was left alone after the arrest of her sister.  You were seen walking with her through the streets of Dundee and the last image of her alive was captured on CCTV near the Ladywell Roundabout.  Shortly afterwards you viciously raped and strangled her, leaving her body to be found many days later beneath a covering of ivy in woodland beside that same roundabout.  Since then you have persistently lied about your involvement in her murder.  You have attempted to adapt your story to fit the facts as they have emerged to incriminate you.  To this day you have shown no remorse for what you did.  The horror and terror that Mary McLaren must have experienced during your murderous attack on her can only be imagined.  I take into account, in selecting the period for the punishment part,  that that attack on her included raping her.

You have previous convictions in Ireland for analogous offences including rape.  I have also taken this into account in selecting the appropriate period.

Having regard to all of these factors, I fix the period of the punishment part at 20 years.  That, I repeat, is the minimum period of imprisonment which you will serve before you may apply for release on licence.  It will be for others to decide whether you should then be released.

In addition, as you have been convicted of a sexual offence to which part 2 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 applies, you will be made subject to the notification requirements contained in that Act: in other words, you will be placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register indefinitely.  You will be given a notice detailing requirements with which you must comply”.