Judgement reserved in Finnegan sentence appeal

Colin Finnegan.
Colin Finnegan.

Judgement has been reserved in the appeal against the sentencing of convicted paedophile and former scout master Colin Finnegan.

The Public Prosecution Service had appealed the length of his 11 year jail sentence last November for a total of 59 sex abuse charges against four young boys over a 16 year period.

Three High Court judges, Lord Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan, Lord Justice Paul Girvan and Mr Justice Ronnie Weatherup have reserved judgement on the matter.

Finnegan, who is from Bessbrook but who had lived in Sloan Hill Mews, Lurgan prior to his trial, was jailed last November.

Prior to the appeal a PPS spokesperson said: “The Director of the Public Prosecution Service, Barra McGrory QC, exercising his powers under the Criminal Justice Act 1988, has asked the Court of Appeal to review the sentence in this case on the grounds that it is unduly lenient.”

The appeal to review the sentence comes within the 28-day time limit from the day the sentence was imposed.

It is further understood that Finnegan has not lodged an appeal against his sentence.

At sentencing the Crown Court judge told Finnegan, it was “chilling to note you still maintain your denials and consider yourself the victim”.

He said this “stance has exacerbated the damage” caused to his four known victims.