Killer John Leathem has won his appeal to have his 27-year sentence reduced for the murder of schoolgirl Paige Doherty. 

The 32-year-old killed teenager Paige in a "savage and frenzied" attack at his Delicious Deli shop in Clydebank on March 19, 2016.


Loading article content

He stabbed the defenceless teenager 61 times and inflicted a total of more than 140 injuries when she stopped for a breakfast roll at his shop.

The father-of-two dumped her body in bushes near Great Western Road two days after the savage knife attack.


At the High Court in Glasgow, Lady Judge Rae sentenced Leathem to a minimum sentence of 27 years and described the killing as ''truly reprehensible and impossible to comprehend''. 

Senior judges at the Appeal Court in Edinburgh have now quashed the original punishment and imposed a minimum 23-year sentence today.

The opinion of the court, delivered by Lord Turnbull, reiterated that Leathem had committed a "most appalling murder" but said other circumstances needed to be given "proper weight".

At a hearing in December, Leathem's lawyer Iain Duguid QC said the punishment part of his client's sentence was higher than other child murder cases and ''represents a significant increase in the tariff'' for such offences.

He compared the sentence handed down in other cases such as the 23 years given to Alexander Pacteau for the murder of Irish student Karen Buckley.

Ruling on Leathem's appeal, the judges said: "The appellant was a family man of previous good character who had not offended before and who had expressed remorse.

"The murder was not premeditated.

"The extent of his efforts to defeat the ends of justice can be measured against certain of the conduct which took place in some of the other cases referred to above.

"When these circumstances are all taken account of, we think it can be said that the length of the punishment part selected in this case was inconsistent with current sentencing practice and was excessive."

The opinion ended: "For the reasons which we have set out above, we shall quash the punishment part imposed in this case and substitute therefor a period of 23 years."