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COURT LATEST: Man sentenced to 14 years for 'despicable' violence against women in Highlands and Moray

By Andrew Dixon

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Sean Hartley.
Sean Hartley.

A 35-year-old man has been sentenced to 14 years imprisonment and given a 25-year non-harassment order at the High Court in Stirling.

Over a period of 15 years, between 2004 and 2019, Sean Hartley subjected five women to systematic domestic abuse in the Highlands and Islands and Moray areas. Women he was in relationships with and claimed to love.

Originally from Forres, offences took place in Inverness, Nairn, Elgin and Forres.

He came to the attention of police in February 2020 where an investigation into his offending commenced.

Following extensive enquiries by officers from the domestic abuse task force, he was arrested on October 5, 2020.

Detective Inspector Gordon Patullo said: “For around 15 years, Hartley subjected his previous partners to violence and abuse, which until now had largely gone unreported and unpunished. Today, he is finally facing the consequences of his despicable behaviour and actions.

“It has taken immense courage for the women involved to speak to us, reliving the horror they were subjected to. I would like to commend them for their bravery and strength. I can only hope that today will provide them with some solace and allow them to move on with their lives.

“This conviction sends out a clear message that domestic abuse crimes will not be tolerated and will be investigated by Police Scotland. I would also like to take this opportunity to reach out to anyone who is experiencing or has experienced domestic abuse; it is never too late to report to the police or seek support and advice from one of our partner agencies."

If you, or anyone you know, is a victim of domestic abuse, contact Police Scotland via 101, or 999 in an emergency.

View our fact sheet on court reporting here

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