Quentin ensures non-custodial sentence in Perverting the Course of Justice case

Quentin ensures non-custodial sentence in Perverting the Course of Justice case


Miss LS was driving a motor vehicle belonging to her boyfriend when she was pulled over by Police. She was aware that she was not insured to drive the motor vehicle and so when the Police asked for her identity she provided the details of her boyfriend’s ex-partner who she knew was still on his insurance policy. Police believed her and gave her a warning about her standard of driving and issued her with a fine in respect of not wearing a seatbelt. This fine was issued in her boyfriend’s ex-partner’s name.


When the fine came to be sent, the ex-partner did not accept that she was liable, and altered the police to the fact that she had been impersonated. The Police made enquiries, and quickly discovered that it was LS who was driving and she was arrested. She was interviewed by Police and made full admissions to the fact that she had impersonated another and she made a full apology. She was subsequently charged with perverting the course of justice.


The matter went to Court where she pleaded guilty. LS was terrified about the possibility of receiving a custodial sentence. She therefore decided to instruct Quentin Hunt to take over her case under the direct public access scheme to try to ensure that she stood the best chance of avoiding prison.


Upon instruction, Quentin set about getting all relevant information from LS and planning her mitigation. This included assembling a powerful set of mitigation documentation in respect of both the circumstances of the commission of the offence itself and the personal circumstances of LS. This included expert evidence as to her son’s medical conditions and a complete set of references from helpful witnesses who were able to speak of LS’s character.


The matter appeared before the Harrow Crown Court for sentence. Perverting the Course of Justice is an offence that usually carried a period of immediate imprisonment. In the leading case of R v Henderson [2011] EWCA Crim 1153; [2012] 1 Cr App R (S) 18, which related to providing false driver details, the Court stated that for a single such offence six months’ imprisonment was the appropriate sentence. The court emphasised in that case, as it has on many occasions, that for an offence of perverting the course of justice of this kind, immediate custody must almost inevitably follow.


As a result of meticulous preparation of the case, Quentin was able to put forward very powerful mitigation on LS’s behalf and attempted to persuade the Court that it should not impose an immediate custodial sentence. Thankfully the Judge agreed with Quentin’s submissions and LS received a 12-week term of custody, which was suspended for 12 months no conditions attached. LS was therefore able to avoid prison and was delighted to be able to return to her life.


Quentin Hunt is a Criminal Barrister with over 2 decades experience in the Criminal Courts, he has particular expertise and experience in cases involving Perverting the Course of Justice. Quentin believes in fighting for his clients ‘tooth and nail’. If you find yourself facing allegations of this sort and require effective representation you may contact Quentin for a free, no obligation conversation about your case.