A FORMER doorman and martial arts teacher who groomed and sexually abused two of his pupils has had his sentence more than doubled to ten years by Court of Appeal judges.
Paul Monty, 54, of Elton, near Stockton, was found guilty of 13 child sex charges at Teesside Crown Court in December and sentenced to four and a half years by Judge Peter Bowers.
He sexually abused two underage girls in the 1980s while he was their martial arts instructor.
But solicitor general Oliver Heald QC referred the matter to the Court of Appeal after complaints from the public that the sentence was unduly lenient.
Court of Appeal judges today (Tuesday, March 11) agreed with him – and increased the sentence to ten years.
Mr Heald told The Northern Echo: “The Attorney General and I are able to put a case up to the court when it is unduly lenient, a gross error.
“There were two girls involved and they were very serious sexual offences. They obviously looked up to him as a Martial Arts instructor and he took advantage, and they believed they had a real relationship.
“With something like child sex abuse which is a very serious crime and a great concern to the public, if we see one which is half what it should be, then yes, we will take it to the Court of Appeal.”
He said that out of about 400 cases that were brought to his attention each year as being too lenient, between 70 and 100 would be sent to the Court of Appeal for tougher sentencing.
He added: “Sexual crimes, especially those which breach the trust between a pupil and teacher, should be punished appropriately.
“Today the Court sent a clear message that anyone who violates the trust of children, no matter how long ago, will face the proper consequences.”
Monty, now a father-of-four, had a sexual relationship with both girls at the same time without each other’s knowledge.
He tied them up and had sex with them in his home and at his family’s furniture shop in Stockton.
At his trial in Teesside he denied eight counts of indecency with a child, four charges of buggery and one of attempted buggery, but was found guilty.