Published: March 25, 2013
Former Burnham Scout leader loses Appeal Court bid in London

Former Burnham-On-Sea Scouts leader David Burland - who was jailed last year for his abuse of children - has failed to convince Appeal Court judges that his trial was unfair.

Burland, 55, was jailed for 15 years with an extended six-year licence period last February after being found guilty of 18 counts of indecent assault, 12 of sexual assault, two of indecency with a child and one count of indecent exposure over a 23-year period.

Last week, he challenged his convictions at the Criminal Appeal Court in London, where his lawyers argued that they were 'unsafe' because the judge had misdirected the jury.

The lawyers claimed the judge had an effect on the jury as one member declared she did not agree with the verdicts.

However, his appeal was dismissed by three of the UK's top judges, who said the juror's dissent had come too late and there was no basis to challenge the guilty verdicts, coming after the jury had been discharged and left the building.

Lord Justice Treacy said: "There is no basis upon which this jury's verdicts are open to challenge, therefore the convictions are safe and the appeal is dismissed."

The offences, which related to three boys and a girl, were committed between 1987 and November 2010 when he worked in the Scout movement in the Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge area. He was immediately suspended when the allegations emerged and the Scout Association said he would not work with the organisation again.


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