Sarah Sands: Woman who stabbed paedophile to death in London has jail sentence doubled

Sarah Sands was found guilty of manslaughter of Michael Pleasted, after discovering he had been charged with sexually assaulting young boys

A woman who stabbed a paedophile to death in east London has had her three-and-a-half-year jail term more than doubled. 

Sarah Sands was found guilty of manslaughter by reason of loss of control of Michael Pleasted, 77, after discovering he had been charged with sexually assaulting young boys on the estate where they lived.

On the evening of 28 November, 2014, the mother-of-five armed herself with a knife and stabbed Pleasted eight times at his flat in Canning Town, east London.

Her sentence was initially reduced from seven years to three-and-a-half by Judge Nicholas Cooke QC, who took into consideration her position as a single mother. 

During the trial it emerged Pleasted had 24 previous convictions for sexual offences between 1970 and 1991.

Explaining his decision, the judge said: “This was a case in which the defendant promptly gave herself up to the police in a highly stressed state, never disputed responsibility for the killing as a matter of fact, did not take the opportunity to get rid of evidence and demonstrated remorse.”

However, three judges at the Court of Appeal have ruled the sentence was too lenient, and increased it to seven-and-a-half years.