Repeat sex offender poses ‘high risk’ to children

A MAN considered to pose a high risk sexually to children has received a further extended sentence at court, six years after a conviction for raping a young boy.

Stuart Francis Haslam has now been convicted of three further sexual offences, involving a young girl, all pre-dating the rape.

He received a 13-and-a-half-year extended determinate sentence at Durham Crown Court in 2015 after admitting the rape as well as making and distributing thousands of indecent images of children.

It meant he had to serve at least nine years behind bars before being eligible for consideration for release by the Parole Board but may have to possibly serve the entire sentence.

That put his “earliest” release date at May 2024, but his “expected” release date is not until November 2028.

Following his recent conviction at the court, on charges of sexual assault on a child under 13, causing a child under 13 to watch a sexual act and causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity, sentence was adjourned pending preparation of a psychiatric report.

Haslam, now 39, formerly of Commercial Street in Brandon, denied the three counts, but the jury returned majority 10 – 2 guilty verdicts on all charges after a six-day trial.

His sentencing hearing, on Friday, was told that the psychiatrist who prepared the report still considers Haslam to pose a “high risk of sexual recidivism”, despite intensive group and individual sex offender work completed within prison since his 2015 conviction.

The court heard of the ongoing psychological effect the offences have had on the victim, who is now an adult woman.

She is said to suffer depression and anxiety, and still has flashbacks and nightmares, of the abuse inflicted on her by Haslam.

Tony Davis, for Haslam, questioned the findings of the report, relating to the risk posed by the defendant, given his completion of two-thirds of the intensive programme to address his offending.

But Judge James Adkin pointed out that Haslam still does not accept his guilt for the offences for which he was recently convicted and the report highlighted his, “out of control sexual urges”, despite the work carried out with him in prison.

He said the risk assessment since the 2015, “has not significantly diminished.”

The judge, therefore, imposed a further extended determinate sentence of 11 years in prison with an extended three-year licence period, but to start only after the conclusion of the sentence Haslam is already serving.

It means he must serve at least seven-and-a-half years of the latest sentence before being eligible for release at the behest of the Parole Board.

Haslam, who is already subject to registration as a sex offender and the terms of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, both for life, may not now be released until the mid-to-late 2030s.

The Northern Echo | Durham