"A Man's a Man for all that!" - Rabbie Burns

"Religion? No thanks. I prefer not to outsource my brainwashing." - Bunc
Trying to get your average Joe creationist to understand the phrase scientific theory is as hard as getting a fish to enjoy mountaineering. Its an unimagined world for them - it requires a complete reversal of their normal modes of thinking and being. The fact that humans could explain the complexities of this world without a creating God is a world view they cannot grasp. It's like asking a tuna if it appreciates the view from the top of Mount Everest. Bunc

Jan 16, 2006

Victims of abuse outraged at lenient sentences!

(please leave supportive comments at the end of this article)

Four women who were physically and sexually abused as children by their foster parents have expressed outrage after their abusers escaped jail.The victims, now adults, are appalled by the decision and warned it sends out the wrong message to sex offenders. One of the victims said "Lord Menzies has succeeded in doing to us what the Lorimers never managed to do in our adult lives: he has made us feel worthless. We can't express strongly enough how devastating it has been to have to relive those memories or our abuse. And to watch them walk away with such minimal sentences made a mockery of everything we have been through. We are absolutely appalled."

We reported on the scandal of the lenient sentences in this case last week. The case invloved a Mr and Mrs Lorimer of Maybole - a retired teacher and his wife. They received Community Service orders - and not even to the maximum amount - rather than the jail terms they so richly deserved.

(an apology - Rabbie is not infallable! The earlier article and comments were accidentally deleted - (sounds of swearing deleted at this point). Fortunately we had copies of the ealier comments and have republished them below.)
The victim who first made the allegations died from cancer just days before the verdict. The four remaining victims are urging an appeal by the Crown and have written and emailed to Cathy Jamieson, the justice minister and Jack McConnell seeking their support in obtaining an appeal and to express disgust at the leniency and hypocrisy of the sentencing of the Lorimers on 10.01.2006. A spokeswoman for the Crown Office has said the case will be considered by the appeals unit.
The victims are asking people to express their views on the matter to the following e-mails : Justice Minister Cathy.jamieson.msp@scottish.parliament.uk and Crown office, mick.bell@copfs.gsi.gov.uk Their aim is to bring some influence in having the Lorimers sentence appealed by the Crown Office. Unfortunately as of Tuesday (17/1/2006) only 3 weeks remains before the deadline for appeal elapses.

In our view it will be a national disgrace if no appeal is launched in this case. Does Cathy Jamieson and the Crown Office have the same dismissive attitude towards the problem of paedophiles as shown by the problems with List 99 in England?
Its time to take a stand; paedophiles must expect to be dealt with firmly by the law and not sent away with a pat on the wrist. This is particularly important in this case of supposedly respectable members of society who abused young highly vulnerable children who had been placed in their care. Their behaviour was disgusting and it is about time that courts reflected our abhorence of such behaviour in the sentences that they impose.


Anonymous said...

where are the previouse 11 comments posted that were very informative?

Anonymous said...

As a parent I am absolutley disgusted by the sentence imposed on these 2 individuals.It makes a mockery of the suffering these children must have experienced.The judge should be made accountable for his decision.

disgusted reader said...

I just read your story about these two abusers and the laughable sentence that they got. I will certainly think about emailing to express my feelings on this!

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helen said...

I like to say a big thanks to Rabbie on behalf of the 4 remaining girls. Yes sadly one (the youngest)died as the hypocracy of the Lorimers legal team delayed the trial for up to two years over the alleged ill health of the Lorimer's. I should say that their lawyer's were aware for some time that the victum who had first brought the case to police attention, was dying. Strangly enough, although putting forward the argument that their client's health was of such poor quality the Lorimer's legal Team managed to convince Lord Menzies, at the point of sentancing, that they were now of sufficant good health to carry out community service, albeit light duties. I ask any one out there who is as disgusted at Lord Menzies message to offenders to do as rabbies articul suggest. From the 4 of us I say thank you for any time you spare to share your views.

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Queen Bee said...

Anyone who works in the field of child abuse will know that these two people will have offended before, and in other ways. I shall be sending e-mails and to more than you have listed. Love to you four girls - I am so very sorry that the system has failed you.

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Brian T said...

I would just like to say that the Scottish Law system has been shown as diabolical again. After being charged with these offences, and may I add discovering one of the victims was gravley ill and dying, these parasites can pretend for over two years to be ill they can't make trial. Then miaracously after being found gulity and not wanting to face prison they suddenly are fit enough to do community service,(wake up Lord Menzies) In other words they have abused the system again, just as they abused the girls all those years ago. I read now and again in our press "not to take the law into your own hands" What can people do when the law is an ass once again and as we all know it won't be the last time.

(angry) family member of the victims in the case.

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Sharon T said...

This is another example of the lack of concern shown by the "system" - the politicians and judges for the impact of abuse on children. Just look at the big issue in England where they have let people on the sex offenders register work as teachers. The politicians and judges should hang heir heads in shame! Cathie Jamieson should be demanding an appeal! My best wishes to those involved and I hope that they can pressure for an appeal.

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Mum of 4 said...

Lord Menzies should be ashamed of himself as should the Lorimers defending lawyers..some hope..neither will have any trouble sleeping..Not so the victims however I would imagine as the sentence imposed gives them neither justice or closure.The outcome of this case is yet another example of judicial contempt and disdain over the impact of child abuse.The defending lawyers may be patting themselves on their respective now wealthy backs given the length of the trial I only hope they will never have to endure or support any of ther own through similar experiences

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Anonymous said...

Concidering the current situation (see Herald: 13.01.2006) in relation to keeping a check on sex offenders, it is nothing but shocking to see a High Courts Lord making such a disposal in relation to these type of offenders and send an 'ok' to other in the community.

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Anonymous said...

The Criminal Justice system is a joke.This sentence fully illustrates the law is an ass when it comes to justice for the victims.Had these abusers stole or been in a car offence they would have got a heavier sentence.Having read your article i will certainly e-mail the relevant people to express my disgust.

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Alexander Tait said...

After reading these comments, I am not surprised that we have people taking the law into their on hands, who in turn (if caught) will face a much harsher penalty than the Lorimer’s, however 2 wrongs don’t make a right, because we have excellent justice system. We are told every election “we will get tough on crime”, well how many Lorimer’s before we get tough. A society is only as strong as its weakest, its our duty to protect and care for the vulnerable, we the elector put Cathy Jamieson into parliament. Protagonist government we do not have, Cathy Jamieson I implore you to do the right thing. The hard part has been done for you, they were found guilty, or were they.

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David Whelan said...

David Whelan

Can I just say that I am shocked but not surprised by the judgement.

My advice to you would to ask for A Judical Review of the Judges sentencing immediately.

Also if you are aware that there were issues that the organisation placing the sisters should have made the authorities aware of.

Or were any doubts about placement made prior to the sisters being placed in the care of Mr and Mrs Lorimer these need to be highlighted i.e Did anyone raise alarm bell before the sisters were put with Mr and Mrs Lorimer.

What was the system of checks carried out at the time?

I fully support you campaign to have the sentences increased and given that the sisters were sexually abused a custodial sentence seems appropriate!

Cathy Jameison is on record as stating she was aware of abuse issues in the 80s. You may not be aware of this she used to be a social worker.

If there is anything our group can do to support your isses please feel free to contact us.

David Whelan
Former Boys and Girls Abused of Quarriers Homes

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Anonymous said...

I don’t feel rage when I read the report that yet another child abuser has received a wrist slap, I feel shame. I am ashamed to live in a society that devalues victims so much that perpetrators of such vile acts against innocent, vulnerable children receive community service. I refer to the case against Henry and Irene Lorimer who on January 10th this year received 180 and 150 hours respectively after being found guilty of abusing children in their care. My God, what message does this sentence send out?
For 25 years the victims of these horrendous monsters had to carry the memories of their abuse, too traumatised to speak out, too ashamed of what had happened to them, too scared that people would not believe them. They had their childhood stolen from them. Their teenage years scarred, confidence and self-esteem non-existent. Normal day-to-day relationships denied to them. Lonely, emotional wrecks. At last, one had the courage to speak out. Old ghosts were resurrected, the horrors and nightmares returned. But wait a minute! They are believed! Justice will prevail!
Henry Lorimer, you are guilty of child abuse you will do 7 and a half days worth of community service. 7 and a half days, that is what 180 hours is. Irene Lorimer, you are guilty, you will do 6 and a quarter days community service. That is what we the Judicial System in Scotland thinks is appropriate for years of abuse of innocent children, for ruining their lives. And let this be a lesson to you!
Hang your heads in shame!

This sentence must be appealed, not only for the victims of the Lorimers but to restore the belief, that in Scotland we value the sanctity of childhood, of care and protection and that anyone who violates this will face the wrath of the courts to the full extent the law allows.


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Ann said...

I consider that the system not only let us down as children, but again at the trial. People who had managed to make it onto the stand were restricted by the Defence Teams in being able to tell what they new. Many who had important information to give were not even allowed to take the stand. We were all saddened that the youngest died several days before the jury returned a guilty verdict in all five counts they were allowed to consider. I should say that the Defence Team argued successfully to have the majourity of the twelve charges brought dismissed. WE accepted that the ill health and eventual death of the youngest left a door open for the Defence tactics, however their ability to water down the remaining charges was a blow. We have considered that Lord Menzies poor sentence may have been to difficult for the her to cope with.

There are many issues around this situation that still require to be addressed before we can move on, but a big thanks to everyone who has and is showing support.

In response to David W comments, Yes concerns had been raised both before we were placed and during (many) the placment. I myself at one point had asked SW for help. However little to no attention was paided.

Anonymous said...

concerned parent says
As law abiding member's of society,we all like to believe that the justiciary will represent our voice in expressing a view of non tolerance of breaches of trust within the sanctity of childhood. However sadly and it shames me to have to bring it once again to the public's attention,but those in power entrusted to enforce the law and penalise appropriately offender's have again miserably failed the victim's. I would hope that we the electorate can in voicing our disdain at this wholly inappropriate sentence can influence the power's that be to review aforementioned case and act accordingly. My heart goes out to the victim's and their families from a very concerned parent.

Concerned parent said...

What faith can we have in the Judicial System in Scotland when perpetrators of heinous crimes like those committed by the Lorimers against children in their care receive such trivial sentences? At the High Court in Edinburgh on 10th Jan, Henry Lorimer received 180 hours community service, his wife Irene getting a mere 150 hours.
Surely Lord Menzies must realise that his leniency in this case serves as no deterrent whatsoever to paedophiles. Surely he can recognise the abhorrence all decent minded people feel on hearing of yet even more monsters being treated with kid gloves. This sentence must be reviewed and replaced by one that demonstrates a belief that the punishment that will fit the crime. If you choose to abuse a child you should know that there will be no hiding place, you will be sought, you will be tried and you will be jailed!

l mcnicol said...

i am disgusted as i am sure every decent person who has read about this case is. the girls who were abused have a life sentence of their own, they will always have to live with what was done to them as children, they may have drawn some comfort had the lorimers been given some kind of punishment, but instead have been slapped in the face by the system again with this joke of a sentence. the lorimers are the lowest of the low and should be treated as such

Yvonne Finnigan said...

I am disgusted at the appalling decision not to impose prison terms on the Lorimers. I wonder if the judge would have been so lenient if it Lorimers victims were relatives of his.
I sincerely hope Cathy Jamieson demands this sentencing is looked at again. I offer my best wishes and support to the victims.

Anonymous said...

Having heard about the sentence that the Lorimers recived, I am, like others who have posted their comments, perplexed that our "justice" system seems once again to have let victims of child abuse down.

I can only imagine how the victims and their families are feeling just now. Nothing can ever bring back their lost childhood.

Those of us who work with child abuse victims know full well that they have to summon up great courage to actually do something about what happenned to them. I presume that when they decided to go to the police, they were apprehensive but sure that right would win the day. How wrong have they been!!??

I hope that the victims get the support they need to have the Lorimer's conviction reviewed and that the proper sentence is given to them.

To protect our country's children from all abuse the Lorimers and other child abusers must be given a strong message and this can only be in the form of a more appropriate punishment.

Concerned of Kilmarnock

Anonymous said...

WHAT AN OUTRAGE. 2 CONVICTED CHILD ABUSERS given the lenient sentence of Communty Service. There are many issues in this case however I want to comment on the sentence at this time. Prior and during the trial these COVICTED CHILD ABUSERS claimed ill health and frailty - and then HEY PRESTO ' are fit to undertake CSO- light duties. WHAT A MOCKERY and TRAVESTY our JUDICIAL SYSTEM is. These individuals the LORIMERS systematically abused SEXUALLY, PHYSICALLY and EMOTIONALLY these children over years. The HARM they have caused is IMMEASUREABLE.
I and family members and friends are DISGUSTED. We will all be e mailing those listed and others to raise our feeling. HOLD YOUR HEADS HIGH GIRLS - YOU HAVE DONE NOTHING TO BE ASHAMED OF.



Anonymous said...

Further to my earlier comment re sentence. I have e mailed over 50 of my friends and family here and overseas asking them to visit this website and if they wish , to make comment.

Best wishes to you girls my, thoughts are with you and yours.

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