Locked up for longer

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A bid to see a baby battering beast caged for longer has been successful – but the court that ruled he must spend years more behind bars has also decided that his identity should be protected.

Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning and the prosecution team involved in the case called for the jail term of the Hemel Hempstead monster to be looked at again after he was sentenced to just 10 years and nine months behind bars.

The 35-year-old, who lived with his girlfriend, beat her baby girl so badly that she has been left blind, deaf, incontinent and needing around the clock care for the rest of her life.

Mr Penning wrote to the Attorney General Dominic Grieve, who agreed that the sentence was unduly lenient and asked for the Court of Appeal to review the case.

The court ruled that his sentence should be increased to 15 years behind bars and another three years on extended licence.

But it also ordered that the sick abuser should not be identified in any way, despite his name, whereabouts and picture being published when he was first jailed.

Mr Penning welcomed the longer sentence but was left puzzled by the banning order.

He said: “It does seem ridiculous. Like everybody else I’m really surprised, it doesn’t make any sense

“I welcome the additional jail term but have to say that I still think even 15 years is not enough. I feel they should lock him up and throw away the key but at least the system has worked.”

County police and crime commissioner David Lloyd said: “The constabulary was absolutely right to challenge the original sentence in this terrible case. I am very pleased that this view was supported by the Royal Courts of Justice.”