July 2022

Oxfordshire paedophile will spend longer under probation supervision

A paedophile will spend an extra year under the watchful eye of the probation service, after an Oxford judge said he should serve an extended 12 month licence period.

Martin Holmes, then 36, was jailed for 15 years in May after jurors at Oxford Crown Court found him guilty of repeatedly sexually abusing a boy in the 2000s.

The case returned to court on Friday morning after officials at HMP Bullingdon, the prison where he is currently incarcerated, queried the sentence imposed.

They said that Holmes should have received an additional year on licence as a ‘sexual offender of particular concern’, as he was found guilty of sexually assaulting a child under-13 by penetration.

Judge Ian Pringle QC, who dealt with the case this week, agreed. The extended year on licence was required by law unless an offender received a life sentence or an extended sentence.

Holmes will have to serve at least two-thirds of his 15 year jail term behind bars before he is eligible for release. Upon release, he will serve the remainder of the 16 year sentence, which includes the extended licence period, under the supervision of probation. 

Sentencing Holmes in May, Judge Michael Gledhill QC said: “You do not accept that you’ve done anything wrong. You’ve shown not one iota of remorse for what you did.”

May 2022

Paedophile showed ‘not one iota of remorse’

A sex predator who showed ‘not one iota of remorse’ blinked in shock as he was caged for 15 years.

Dad-of-two Martin Holmes, 36, was more than twice his victim’s age when he began abusing his nine-year-old victim in the mid-2000s.

The abuse, which began with the then teenager touching his younger victim, escalated until the boy was in his mid-teens.

Holmes had denied molesting the boy but was found guilty last month of 14 offences, including sexual assault of a child under-13 by penetration and sexual activity with a child.

Jailing him for 15 years at Oxford Crown Court on Friday afternoon, Judge Michael Gledhill QC told the bespectacled defendant: “You have denied the offences from the moment you were confronted with them until this very day.

“You do not accept that you’ve done anything wrong. You do not accept you’ve committed any criminal offences let alone sexually abusing this boy over these years.

“You say he is a complete liar and has made this all up.

“You’ve shown not one iota of remorse for what you did.”

In March, jurors at Oxford Crown Court heard how Holmes, who was said to have been bullied at school, struck up a friendship with his victim after befriending the boy’s parents in the south Oxfordshire village where they lived.

Prosecutor Laura Blackband told the jury that Holmes ‘singled out’ his victim and groomed him.

He was accused of ‘experimenting’ on the boy, using him as a ‘sexual outlet’.

The offending stopped when the defendant moved away from the area.

The victim tried to bury what happened but spoke to his mother and then girlfriend about his seven-year ordeal after Holmes got in touch with the man’s father via social media to ask about a car for sale.

Sending him to prison, Judge Gledhill said Holmes had been regarded as ‘something of an oddball’ by his contemporaries in the village.

“The fact you were bullied at school is absolutely no excuse for what you did, but may indicate the sort of inadequate man in some respects that you are,” he said.

Turning to the victim’s family, who packed the public gallery for the sentencing hearing,

Judge Gledhill said: “I see his parents and his family in court, no doubt blaming themselves for not doing what they now realise they ought to have done because they trusted you.

“They are not to be blamed for that. They didn’t commit these offences. They just trusted you and you have breached their trust as well as that of your so-called friend, the victim.”

Holmes, of Bluebell Avenue, Peterborough, will serve half of his 15 year sentence before he is eligible for release.

A restraining order prevents him from contacting his victim’s family and he will be a sex offender for life.

April 2022

Victim and his supporters cry out as paedophile found guilty of 14 charges

A sex predator’s victim cried into his mother’s shoulder as his abuser was convicted of 14 charges.

The man, who is now in his 20s and cannot be identified for legal reasons, was still a boy when he was subjected to repeated abuse by Martin Holmes in a south Oxfordshire village.

The 36-year-old defendant, who flatly denied that any of the allegations were true, shifted his weight from foot-to-foot as he heard the jury foreman repeat the word ‘guilty’ 13 times at Oxford Crown Court on Wednesday.

Muffled cries could be heard from the victim and his supporters, sat in the public gallery, as the verdicts were read out.

After confirming that they were yet to reach unanimous verdicts on the remaining charge, attempting to incite sexual activity with a child, the jury returned to their deliberations.

When they returned an hour later, it was to a courtroom empty of everyone except the lawyers and the judge. The foreman confirmed the jury had found him guilty on the remaining count by a majority of 10 jurors to two.

Judge Michael Gledhill QC remanded Holmes into custody to be sentenced on May 6. He ordered pre-sentence reports.

During the trial, the jury heard that Holmes was around 20 when he subjected his victim to the appalling sexual abuse.

Closing her case, prosecutor Laura Blackband said the victim was ‘singled out’ and groomed by Holmes.

The defendant was accused of ‘experimenting’ and using the boy as a ‘sexual outlet’.

Ms Blackband said: “What the Crown say is that this abuse happened there can be no doubt about it.

“There can be no doubt that you, having watched the video recorded interview the victim gave [to the police] and having seen him cross-examined there can be no doubt this is a man who has in effect been broken by this.

“Albeit a physical man in his 20s, he almost presents as a child. In many respects that may well be because he’s stuck as a child.”

Holmes, now of Bluebell Avenue, Peterborough, denied any of the abuse had taken place.

He was found guilty of four counts of sexual assault of a child under-13, two counts of sexual assault of a child under-13 by penetration, six counts of sexual activity with a child and two counts of attempted sexual activity with a child.