Beds, Herts & Bucks

Derek Cheeseman: Case adjourned over care home place

A dying man who posed as a policeman to abduct a girl has had his sentencing adjourned because a care home place has not been found for him.

Derek Cheeseman, 76, of Leighton Buzzard, is being treated for terminal stomach cancer at Bedford Prison.

He was deemed unfit to plead and a jury decided on 31 July that he had committed the offence.

Judge Mark Bishop, sitting at Luton Crown Court, heard social services were yet to carry out a risk assessment.

At the last hearing in August the judge had ordered that reports be carried out into Cheeseman's mental health and into how social services could carry out "bespoke" supervision.

Cheeseman, who has weeks to live, must be moved to a nursing or care home, the judge said.

Disturbed by farmer

He said he intended to pass a supervision order under the 1964 Criminal Procedure Act with strict conditions under a sexual offences prevention order banning Cheeseman from having contact with children.

In November last year, Cheeseman persuaded a nine-year-old girl to get into his car by telling her he was a policeman, the court heard.

He drove her to a remote track near Leighton Buzzard, where he told her to get in the back seat, but was disturbed by a farmer who called police.

The court also heard that 17 days before, Cheeseman had tried to kidnap two 12-year-old girls in the village of Stewkley in Buckinghamshire, by asking them to walk his dogs.

David Jones, of Central Bedfordshire Council's adult social care, said it had not received psychiatric reports and had no information about the Sexual Offences Prevention Order or an exclusion zone around Leighton Buzzard.

Judge Bishop told Mr Jones: "I am disappointed it appears so little information has been given to you or, if I may say so, you have not asked for it.

"This is a very, very unusual situation... it cannot be allowed to drift."

The case is due to be heard again on 4 October.

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