Man who avoided jail for raping girl, 13, because he was too young launches legal challenge against conviction

19 April 2023, 10:11

Sean Hogg was found guilty of raping a teenage girl when he was 17, but was not jailed
Sean Hogg was found guilty of raping a teenage girl when he was 17, but was not jailed. Picture: The Crown
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

A 21-year-old man who avoided jail after being found guilty of raping a 13-year-old girl because he was 'too young' has launched a legal appeal against his conviction.

Sean Hogg, 21, was found guilty of raping a teenage girl at Dalkeith Country Park in Midlothian, Scotland, when he was 17.

Judge Lord Lake said he had to take Hogg's age into account when sentencing him, meaning he avoided jail and ordered to carry out 270 hours of unpaid work.

Hogg has now instructed his legal team to challenge his conviction.

Sean Hogg has launched an appeal against his rape conviction
Sean Hogg has launched an appeal against his rape conviction. Picture: The Crown

Hogg's sentencing sparked outrage among those in the legal and political profession, with Rape Crisis Scotland's CEO Sandy Brindley describing the sentencing as "worryingly lenient".

"This is an extremely serious case and we are shocked this perpetrator has not received a custodial sentence," she said.

"Given the gravity of this crime and the fact it was tried at the High Court, this sentence appears to us to be worryingly lenient.

"Our thoughts are with the survivor of this crime. For survivors of any sexual violence, it can be very difficult to see reports of convicted perpetrators walking free from court."

Read More: Teenage victim of rapist spared jail after sickening child sexual assault left 'devastated' by his sentence

Read More: Outrage as man, 21, who raped girl, 13, in park walks free from court after judge considers him too young to be jailed

Hogg's teenage victim was left "inconsolable" by her rapist's conviction after he was given a community sentence.

“She was left inconsolable when she found out he’d been let out — absolutely devastated and distraught," her grandfather said.

“She said to me ‘you told me to go through with this, all this grief and stress, now look what’s happened’," he told the Sun.

"I promised her the law would protect her and she had to speak up to protect other girls. Now I feel like a fool.

"I feel like I’ve let her down and he’s got a few weeks picking up litter."

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