Bethan Rogers defended Ms Kerianne Stephens at Maidstone Crown Court. Ms Stephens, 26 years old, was a former prison officer who during her time at HMP Swaleside had had an affair with inmate, Louis Tate, which had resulted in her becoming a mother. Ms Stephens had pleaded guilty to misconduct in a public office, as well as unauthorised transmission from a mobile phone from within a prison.
The case involved a highly complex sentencing exercise, balancing the public interest of deterrent sentences for this kind of offending which threatens prison security, and the needs of the defendant’s baby daughter. In all but the most exceptional circumstances, offences of this nature result in an immediate custodial sentence. Ms Rogers was able to persuade the Judge to suspend a custodial sentence given the defendant’s own history of vulnerability and the fact that separation from her mother would clearly have a damaging effect on her baby.
Bethan Rogers was instructed by Jeremy Guy of Thompsons Solicitors.