A judge may decide to publish a statement after passing sentence on an offender in cases where there is particular public interest; where a case has legal significance; or where providing the reasons for the decision might assist public understanding.
Please note that statements may include graphic details of offences when it is necessary to fully explain the reasons behind a sentencing decision.
Follow us if you wish to receive alerts as soon as statements are published.
Once charges are spent, any statement in relation to them is removed and cannot be provided or acknowledged. Statements published before the launch of the website may be available on request. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The independence of the judiciary is essential to safeguard people’s rights under law - enabling judges to make decisions impartially based solely on evidence and law, without interference or influence from the government or politicians.
When deciding a sentence, a judge must deal with the offence that the offender has been convicted of, taking into account the unique circumstances of each particular case. The judge will carefully consider the facts that are presented to the Court by both the prosecution and by the defence.
For more information about how judges decide sentences; what sentences are available; and matters such as temporary release, see the independent Scottish Sentencing Council website.
Read more about victims of crime and sentencing.
HMA v Brian Murphy
Jul 21, 2021
The custodial period is 7 years imprisonment, and the extension period is 2 years.
On sentencing, Lord Matthews made the following statement in Court:
“You were found guilty of two charges of lewd, indecent and libidinous practices and behaviour towards two young boys, the charges involving in each case an act of sodomy.
I need not repeat what was revealed in the evidence. Suffice it to say that the witnesses said that they viewed you as an ‘uncle’.
They should have been able to look to you for affection and guidance but instead you took advantage of them for your own gratification in a most disgusting way and the effects on them were made perfectly clear during the course of their evidence.
I have listened to all that has been said on your behalf.
You have a short record but it includes a conviction in respect of five charges in November 2014. Two of those charges involved sexual conduct towards males between the ages of 13 and 16 and you also have a conviction for breaching the notification requirements of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. I note that these post-date the offences for which you have now to be sentenced and I accept that the second conviction is in relation to a technical breach.
I am satisfied, having considered the terms of the reports and taken account of these convictions, that the terms of an ordinary licence will not be sufficient to protect the public, particularly male children, from you on your release.
In these circumstances, I am going to impose on you a sentence which is in two parts. It will be a cumulo sentence, in other words one sentence covering both offences.
The first part, the custodial element, will be one of imprisonment for 7 years. That will not be the end of your sentence because when you are released the second part of the sentence will come into play.
That part, known as the extension period, will be one of 2 years. During that period you will be subject to the conditions of a licence set by the Scottish Ministers and any breach of the conditions could see you liable to be returned to prison to serve the remainder of the sentence. The sentence will run from 17 June 2021.
I have already certified that your conviction attracts the notification provisions of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. That will be for an indefinite period.
I confirm that the Clerk was asked on the last occasion you appeared to notify the Scottish Ministers of your conviction in terms of the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act 2007.”
21 July 2021