September 2007

Child abuse pictures JP avoids jail

A trainee magistrate who took perverted and indecent images of under-age girls after plying them with drink was spared prison yesterday.

The judge said his decision to allow Michael Raisey, 57, to go free was not affected by recent sentencing guidelines from Home Secretary John Reid.

Judge Jeremy Griggs imposed a two-year community order and said: “If I had felt custody was appropriate I would have sent you to prison.”

Judge Griggs told Exeter Crown Court the circumstances of the case were “very much on the borderline” of jail but that he felt Raisey had been punished enough.

Prosecutor David Evans said a search of Raisey’s home had found photos of five girls aged 13, 14 and 15 in sexual poses. Raisey took the pictures after plying the girls with wine and vodka.

Defending, Mary McCarthy, said Raisey had boozed heavily since his wife died and his parties got out of control.

Raisey, of Burlescombe, Devon, admitted eight charges of taking indecent pictures of children.