West Law Report

Use of false passport is relevant to sentence

Posted in Times Law Report by mrkooenglish on September 10, 2008

From The TimesSeptember 10, 2008

Use of false passport is relevant to sentence
Court of Appeal, Criminal Division
Published September 10, 2008
Regina v Omotade

When the court was sentencing a person for the possession of a false passport, the use to which the passport had been put was of potential significance.

The Court of Appeal, Criminal Division (Lord Justice Toulson, Mr Justice Davis and Judge Bevan, QC) so stated on August 1, 2008, when allowing an appeal against sentence by Rita Dupe Omotade who pleaded guilty at Woolwich Crown Court, on March 13, 2008, to an offence of possession of a false identity document with intent, contrary to section 25 of the Identity Cards Act 2006. She had used a false Nigerian passport when seeking to cash a cheque.

JUDGE BEVAN said that the 15-month sentence imposed was in the middle of the 12 to 18-month custodial range advised in R v Kolawole ([2005] 2 Cr App R (S) 71) as far as concerned the appropriate sentencing practice applicable to a guilty plea to a passport offence under the Forgery and Counterfeiting Act 1981 where the defendant was of good character and a single passport had been used.

However, the instant case, under the 2006 Act, was distinguishable since the defendant had used the document when she was seeking to obtain something to which she had otherwise been entitled, namely, the sum payable under the cheque, and the case was thus at, or slightly below the lowest end of the relevant range of sentence.

A 10-month sentence was substituted.

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