Robert Payne – kitten killing former councillor jailed for tax fraud

Robert Payne, who up until 2011 was a Bradford City Councillor for Keighley West was sent to prison for two years on Christmas Eve 2013 for tax fraud. It seems that he had created false documents to generate fictitious VAT or income tax return for various companies that he owned

The relevant guidelines are the Fraud Sentencing Guidelines (starting at page 27). It’s not clear exactly how it would be calculated but it is probably classified as not being fraudulent from the outset, but carried out over a long period of time with multiple frauds. On the basis that he was hoping to obtain £140,000 this has a starting point of 2 years with a range of 1-3 years.

Although, in fact, only £91,243 was obtained, given the serious breach of trust, the creation of false documents and the fact that Mr Payne had no accountancy qualifications, this raises the seriousness that may explain why a sentence of 2 years was passed, even with a guilty plea (which on the face of it seems over the odds).

The news reports aren’t entirely clear, but it seems that Mr Payne has a previous conviction for something pretty similar, which is clearly an aggravating feature.

As for the kittens? Well, in 2011 (whilst on a suspended sentence for the previous fraud) Mr Payne was sent to prison for 5 months for animal cruelty. It seems that whilst drunk (and annoyed at something) he took his frustration out on four kittens that he had recently bought. He “swung the four-month-old cats round his house [and] broke their skulls and most of their limbs and decapitated two of them.” When they attended, “Police and RSPCA officials found three kittens in a freezer and blood spread around the house”.

Mr Payne, who “was drunk when police arrived, told officers he “must have got angry about something, picked up one of the cats by its stomach and used it as a battering ram, smashed its head against something“.

This previous conviction would be an additional aggravating feature (although not as much as the previous for fraud).

This entry was posted in In the news on by .

About Dan Bunting

I'm a lawyer who works for myself. Legal geek, maths freak, general dullard and jack of all trades. Here’s a few views on law and occasional musings on life. Usual caveats about not relying on anything I say etc applies.

6 thoughts on “Robert Payne – kitten killing former councillor jailed for tax fraud

  1. Bob

    Pity we have to share the same world with scum like Payne, I’m not concerned with fraud but if you’re convicted of animal cruelty you deserve to be hung.

  2. Andrew

    Oh, for Pete’s sake. What do you want to do people who are cruel to other people, and especially children, Bob? You don’t get hanged for multiple rapes of little girls, Bob, the most you can get is life and that won’t be whole-life, and hanging for anything less than murder was dropped in 1861, or was it 1828, Dan will know: so aren’t you getting this a bit out of proportion?

    He’s a nasty piece of work but five months for what he did to the animals was quite enough.

    1. Bob

      No, but people should be hung for rape, it’s lilly bellied liberals always empathising with scum like Payne that has brought this country to the state it is now.

      5 months in prison is nothing, it’s not a punishment these days. We should leave prison for petty crimes and string up the rest, start thinking more of the victims and less of the scum that commit crimes.

  3. Andrew

    If the punishment for rape was the same as for murder why would any rapist not immediately silence his victim and reduce the chance of detection and punishment?

    1. Bob

      Why not treat all serious criminals the same, commit murder, rape, etc. and you know you’ll end up on a rope, they’re no further use to society anyway. I don’t want murderers and rapists back in society after a nominal time inside, the gene pool will be better off without them.

  4. Andrew

    “the gene pool will be better off without them.”

    That’s an argument, if you can call it that, for keeping them in until they are past the age of begetting or bearing a child, as the case may be, or perhaps for rendering them incapable of so doing; but in either event then releasing them.

    It’s also an argument, if you can call it that, for rounding up and bumping off any issue they may already have.

    Come on, Bob, welcome to the real world.


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