THE PRISON sentences handed to Arthur Labinjo-Hughes’ killers have been referred to the Court of Appeal for being too lenient.
The six-year-old’s stepmother Emma Tustin was jailed for at least 29 years for his murder and Arthur’s father Thomas Hughes got 21 years for manslaughter at Coventry Crown Court in December.
The Attorney General, Suella Braverman, has referred the sentences of Tustin and Hughes to the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme.
Arthur, died from a brain injury inflicted by Tustin at her Cranmore Road home in Shirley in June 2020.
During the trial the court heard how Tustin and Hughes subjected Arthur to a ‘campaign’ of abuse during lockdown in 2020, lying about his welfare to the school and misleading social services.
The involvement of the latter are now be the subject of two independent reviews.
The pair were also convicted of child cruelty and made Arthur stand in isolation for 14 hours they also deprived him of food and water and poisoned him with salt.
The Attorney General said: “My thoughts are with all those who loved Arthur Labinjo-Hughes.
“This is an extremely upsetting and disturbing case, involving a clearly vulnerable young child. Emma Tustin and Thomas Hughes grossly abused their position of trust and subjected an innocent child, who they should have been protecting to continued emotional and physical abuse.
“I understand how distressing the public have found this case, but it is my job to decide if a sentence appears to be unduly lenient based on the facts of the case.
“I have carefully considered the details of this case, and I have decided to refer the sentences to the Court of Appeal as I believe them to be too low.”
Solihull MP, Julian Knight, has campaigned for Tustin and Hughes’ sentences to be reviewed since they were handed to the pair.
In a video on Twitter Mr Knight said: “I am pleased that the Attorney General has agreed with me that the sentences handed out to Emma Tustin and Thomas Hughes were unduly lenient and that now will be referred to the Court of Appeal.
“I hope that these individuals receive whole life sentences for their vile crime because personally I can’t think of anything worse than what they did to Arthur.”
A date for the hearing at the Court of Appeal is yet to be set.