Following a two-day hearing at Harrow Crown Court, on Friday Jake Clarke lost his appeal against last October’s conviction in Magistrates court for harassment of two individuals related to the Hampstead Satanic ritual abuse hoax.
As with Sabine McNeill’s trial, these individuals are protected by a reporting restriction which prevents their being named.
We have not heard definitive reports regarding Jake’s appeal of his sentence, but we understand that the maximum sentence of six months was imposed at the Magistrates court, and that the Crown Court appeal is bound by the limitations of the lower court. Therefore we would not expect any increase in sentence, but the actual outcome requires clarification.
Similarly, no word has been received concerning the Criminal Behaviour Order which was imposed in October, but there is no reason to expect that it would have been revoked.
Jake’s hearing seems to have gone on for an unusually long time: the judge did not retire to consider judgment until 4:55 p.m., and resumed at 5:15 p.m., finishing up at nearly 6:00 p.m.—a full two hours past the usual 4:00 p.m. ending time.