Rapist’s jail term stands
Court: Prosecutors’ bid to increase four-year sentence rejected by judges
A bid by prosecutors to increase the prison sentence of a child rapist who preyed on young girls in Aberdeen three decades ago was rejected by appeal judges yesterday.
Sales manager John Barbour, 52, was jailed for four years earlier this year after he was convicted of indecency offences against two children and the rape of one of the victims.
The Crown went to the Court of Appeal in Edinburgh seeking to have the punishment increased, arguing the sentence imposed by the trial judge, Lord Ericht, was unduly lenient.
Advocate depute Alex Prentice QC said Barbour had first offended when he was aged 13 to 14 and the victim was aged four.
Mr Prentice said the criminal conduct had continued with the second girl when he was between 17 and 21 and she was between four and seven.
Defence counsel Mark Stewart QC, however, argued the trial judge was “uniquely placed” to consider the case after hearing all the evidence at the trial at the High Court in Edinburgh.
The Lord Justice General, Lord Carloway, sitting with Lord Menzies and Lord Turnbull, refused the Crown sentence appeal.
Lord Carloway said: “Although the court agrees with the submission that this sentence is at the lower end of the available range it was still within that range.”
First offender Barbour, formerly of Danestone Terrance, Bridge of Don, in Aberdeen, followed proceedings by a video link from prison. He was earlier found guilty of pinning a four-year-old girl against a wall and molesting her and getting her to perform a sex act on him between December 1978 and December the following year in his home city.
He was also convicted of molesting and raping the second child from the age of four between August 1984 and December 1986.
The first victim told his trial that as a little girl her parents would regularly send her on an errand at the same time on a Sunday to get newspapers but she would be intercepted by Barbour.
She said on the first occasion he took her to the back of a landing at a block of flats. “I realised something was not right so I started screaming,” she said.
The 43-year-old woman said that as an adult she had gone for counselling.
“I realised something was not right”
RAPIST: John Barbour was jailed for four years