Scottish Daily Mail
Sex, lies and a very harsh punishment
USUALLY, it’s the leniency of some court sentences that’s shocking. In the case of Gayle Newland’s eight years for pretending to be a man, it’s the harshness of her sentence.
Privately educated Ms Newland, 25, made love to a girlfriend her own age between six and ten times after they had communicated online and by phone for two years.
Ms Newland had pretended to be a man, lowering her voice and binding her chest. After the victim said she wanted them to sleep together, Ms Newland — saying that she’d been disfigured and was cripplingly shy — convinced her to wear a blindfold whenever they met.
They then had sex repeatedly, Ms Newland using a sex toy. The victim only discovered the deception accidentally.
Judge roger Dutton said eight years for ‘this cruel and wicked deception’ was the minimum sentence for three counts of assault by penetration, which had left the victim ‘deeply traumatised’.
Surely it cannot be right. Some violent criminals get shorter sentences than eight years. You’d have thought both perpetrator and victim would have benefited more from psychiatric counselling.
I wonder if ‘trauma’ — an imprecise condition, to say the least — trumps actual physical harm in the courts now.