The Yukon Crown office is appealing the sentence handed down to a man who pleaded guilty to sexually abusing 13 girls, arguing that the sentencing judge erred by not designating him a dangerous offender.
At the same time, the man is appealing his custodial sentence, claiming that the judge did not give him enough credit for the amount of time he spent in pre-sentence custody.
The man cannot be named in order to protect the identity of his victims, who, at the time of the crimes, were all girls under the age of 14. He pleaded guilty earlier this year to 25 offences, including 11 charges of sexual interference, nine charges of making child pornography, three charges of voyeurism and two charges of possessing and accessing child pornography.
Yukon Supreme Court Justice Ron Veale sentenced the man, a former Yukon resident, to 16 years in prison last month followed by a 10-year supervision order after designating him a long-term offender.
The Crown filed its notice of appeal July 27. The man filed his July 30.
During sentencing submissions, the Crown had argued the man deserved a dangerous offender designation, which would have allowed for him to be incarcerated indefinitely. However, in his decision, Veale agreed with the defence’s arguments that, based on the testimony of a forensic psychiatrist, the man was a good candidate for treatment and eventual release into the community.
In its grounds for appealing the sentence, the Crown claims that Veale “fell into an error of law” by relying on the psychiatrist’s “hearsay-based opinion” in the absence of the man testifying himself. The Crown also claims that Veale wrongly interpreted that the threshold for designating someone a dangerous offender “required proof of the offender’s ‘treatability,’ or, in effect, proof of an offender’s therapeutic hopelessness.”
“Based upon that too high designation threshold, the sentencing judge declined to designate (the man) as a dangerous offender, notwithstanding the uncontroverted evidence that (the man) is a high risk paedophile who requires lifetime supervision,” the notice of application reads.
The Crown is seeking an order designating the man a dangerous offender as well as an order varying the man’s sentence so it’s in accordance with that designation.
In his notice of appeal, the man claims that his current sentence is “demonstrably unfit” and that Veale did not give him enough credit for the time he spent in pre-sentence custody.
During sentencing, Veale gave the man credit for 866 days spent in pre-sentence custody, multiplied by one-and-a-half for a total credit of 1,299 days. However, the man claims in his grounds for appeal that he spent 1,233 days in pre-sentence custody, which, when multiplied by one-and-a-half, should have given him a credit of 1,849 and a half days. The difference amounts to around a year and a half.
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