Mark Mcgivern, Daily Record (Britain), September 14, 2007
A convicted rapist from Jamaica has won a legal challenge against plans to kick him out of Scotland.
Three appeal judges said it was “irrational” to claim that Chan Wright should be deported because there was a high risk of him striking again.
They noted that he had only been convicted of one sex offence, which happened 12 years ago.
Wright raped a 19-year-old girl in 1995 at his home in Livingston, West Lothian, and was jailed for four years.
He was jailed again in 2003, this time for four months, for being concerned in the supply of cocaine. The sheriff who sentenced him recommended that he be deported.
Wright appealed but his plea was thrown out by the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal in 2005. The panel ruled that he had committed two serious crimes and posed a high risk of reoffending.
The rapist refused to give up, however, and took his case to the Court of Session. And Lord Johnston, sitting with Lords Eassie and Wheatley, upheld Wright’s appeal and ordered the tribunal to look again at the case.
In a written judgment published yesterday, Lord Johnston saidWright had only committed one sexual offence.
And he said there was no basis for the claim that there was a high risk of Wright committing further sex or drug offences.
The judge said: “While rape is of course a serious offence, the fact is that the conviction stands alone, with no suggestion of any other offence of a sexual nature.”
Lord Johnston added that the description of the cocaine offence as “serious” did not sit well with the fact that Wright only got four months for it.
Wright’s QC, Mungo Bovey, said his client had briefly held a packet of cocaine which was then passed on to someone else.
Wright, who now lives in Huntly, Aberdeenshire, was allowed into Britain for six months in 1994.
But the following year, he was given permission to stay indefinitely after marrying a UK citizen.
Just months later, Wright raped his victim after letting her into his home to use the phone.
The traumatised girl ran home sobbing, jumped into a bath still partly clothed, and burned her underwear.
But she would not tell anyone what had happened. Her boyfriend found out by reading her diary two days later.
Wright’s marriage broke up after he was convicted of rape in 1997.
He has two children with his ex-wife and claims they would suffer if he was deported.
The court heard that Wright’s current partner, Kate Swinney, has made it clear that she will not go to Jamaica with him.
(Posted on September 18, 2007)
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