A MASKED robber jailed indefinitely for a violent house raid in which two elderly men were beaten had his potential life sentence overturned by appeal judges.
Michael Patrick Nelson, 35, was sentenced to indefinite imprisonment for public protection in April after pleading guilty to robbery.
On the evening of November 9, 2010, he and two other men forced their way into 68-year-old Alan Mackareth’s Halifax home.
Mr Mackareth’s friend, Duncan Turner, was knocked to the ground and repeatedly hit to the head before Mr Mackareth himself was kicked and had a chair broken over him.
The gang had been targeting Mr Mackareth’s Audi TT, but instead he handed over the keys to his Vauxhall Corsa and the gang left.
Sentencing him, the crown court judge said Nelson’s risk to the public could be managed with an indefinite sentence.
But after an appeal by his lawyers, three senior judges at the Court of Appeal in London quashed the sentence and imposed a seven-and-a-half year custodial term on Nelson, of Greenholme Court, Holme Wood, Bradford.
Lord Justice Hooper, sitting with Mr Justice Holroyde and Mr Justice Supperstone, said the term, with an extra three years of supervised licence afterwards, was enough to protect the public from him.
His lawyers had argued that, even if he was to be categorised as dangerous, an extended sentence would suffice.
Allowing the appeal, Lord Justice Hooper said: “Clearly this appellant needs the additional degree of supervision which an extended sentence would provide.
“We take the view that, with the effect of his custodial sentence and the long period of supervision which we order, it cannot be said that there will be a significant risk of serious harm.”