A POLICE sergeant who was jailed for eight years for raping two young girls as a teenager has had his sentence slashed by appeal judges who ruled his punishment was excessive.
Paul Greig, 52, was convicted of abusing the sisters at a house in West Lothian when he was babysitting the children aged seven and nine in 1974 and 1975.
The sentencing judge, Lord Kinclaven, told Greig at the High Court in Edinburgh last year: “It is clear you have caused a high level of harm.”
Greig was placed on the sex offenders register following his conviction and Lord Kinclaven told him there was no alternative to “a significant custodial sentence”.
But Greig, formerly of Armadale, West Lothian, appealed against the prison term imposed and has now had it reduced to five years.
The appeal judges said they considered that Lord Kinclaven did not give adequate weight to Greig’s age at the time of the offences and his subsequent many years of “responsible adulthood”.
Lord Carloway, the now Lord Justice Clerk, sitting with Lady Smith, added that there was a lack of any need to include an element in the sentence for the future protection of the public.
The senior judge said at the Court of Criminal Appeal in Edinburgh that Greig had to be sentenced as an adult but account must be taken of his age and relative immaturity at the time of the crimes.
Lord Carloway said: “The significance of the 37 years or so which has elapsed since the date of the offending, without criminal conduct, is relevant. It indicates that the risk of reoffending is low.
“Furthermore, during that period, the appellant has been shown to have made a positive contribution to society. These are important considerations in the sentencing assessment.”
Married grandfather Greig, who joined the Lothian and Borders force in 1992 and rose to the rank of sergeant, was found guilty of four offences. Threats were also made to the victims to prevent them disclosing his actions. The abuse occurred when Greig was aged 14 and 15.
The court heard that the victims had described their happy childhoods being ended by Greig’s abuse.
Lord Carloway said statements “tell of estrangement, isolation and low esteem with continuing anxiety, distress and confusion”.
He said that Greig’s daughter had “written a powerful and moving assessment of the impact which the pursuit of the allegations has had on both the appellant and members of his family.”
The judges were told that Greig had attempted suicide on several occasions.