The case of Jason Grainger has been referred to the Court of Appeal by the Criminal Cases Review Commission (“CCRC”) because time that he spent in prison on remand was not deducted from his sentence.
In August 2018 Mr Grainger pleaded guilty at Maidstone Crown Court to charges of causing grievous bodily harm with intent and false imprisonment.
By the time he came to be sentenced in October 2018, he had been remanded in custody for 199 days. The Crown Court sentenced him to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 10 years and the minimum term was later reduced to eight years on appeal.
However, neither the sentencing judge nor the Court of Appeal took account of the 199 days Mr Grainger had spent on remand.
In February 2022, Mr Grainger’s co-defendant, Gavin Trendell, had the time he spent on remand deducted from his sentence by the Court of Appeal, following a successful referral by the CCRC.
CCRC Chairman Helen Pitcher OBE said:
“Our role is to uncover potential miscarriages of justice and refer them to the appropriate appellate court, which in this case is the Court of Appeal, so that they can be put right. This includes when something has gone wrong with sentencing.
“Following the Court of Appeal’s decision to reduce the sentence of his co-defendant, we contacted Mr Grainger and invited him to apply to us, because we were concerned that a similar error had occurred in his case.
“As a result of a careful review, we’ve decided that there is a real possibility that the Court of Appeal will reduce Mr Grainger’s sentence to reflect the 199 days he has already served on remand.”
Mr Grainger was unrepresented in his application to the CCRC.
This press release was issued by the Communications Team, Criminal Cases Review Commission. Tel: 0121 232 0900, email: email@example.com.
Notes to Editors
- Although time spent on remand is automatically deducted from most prison sentences, this is not the case with a discretionary life sentence. When imposing such a sentence the law states that a judge must “take account” of any time spent on remand when calculating the minimum term. The judge therefore has a discretion not to credit the time spent on remand, but in the absence of any compelling reason(s) generally will do so.
- The CCRC is an independent body set up under the Criminal Appeal Act 1995. It is responsible for independently reviewing suspected and alleged miscarriages of criminal justice in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It is based in Birmingham and is funded by the Ministry of Justice.
- There are currently 11 Commissioners who bring to the CCRC considerable experience from a wide variety of backgrounds. Commissioners are appointed by the King on the recommendation of the Prime Minister in accordance with the Office for the Commissioner for Public Appointments’ Code of Practice.
- The CCRC usually receives around 1,400 applications for reviews (convictions and/or sentences) each year. Since starting work in 1997, the CCRC has referred around 3% of applications to the appeal courts.
- The CCRC considers whether, as a result of new evidence or argument, there is a real possibility that the conviction would not be upheld were a reference to be made. New evidence or argument is argument or evidence which has not been raised during the trial or on appeal. Applicants should usually have appealed first. A case can be referred in the absence of new evidence or argument or an earlier appeal only if there are “exceptional circumstances”.
- If a case is referred, it is then for the appeal court to decide whether the conviction is unsafe or the sentence unfair.
- More details about the role and work of the Criminal Cases Review Commission can be found at www.ccrc.gov.uk. The CCRC can be found on Twitter @ccrcupdate and Instagram the_ccrc