Medical records delay holds up knife-point robber’s sentencing

Bradford Crown Court
Bradford Crown Court

A potentially dangerous robber who held up a convenience store in Halifax has had his sentence hearing adjourned after delays in obtaining his GP medical records.

A judge at Bradford Crown Court gave a seven-day “ultimatum” to the doctors’ practice involved in the case of Amrad Hussain and indicated that he would issue a witness summons against the practice manager if the records were not handed over to the defendant’s solicitors.

Hussain, 30, of Highfield Terrace, Halifax, pleaded guilty to robbery and possessing a knife within a few weeks of his attack on the store in February.

But delays in obtaining his medical records has meant that a psychiatrist could only prepare a provisional report on the defendant and Recorder Andrew Dallas said the issue of whether Hussain posed a danger to the public also needed to be considered.

The court heard that a pre-sentence report by the probation service had indicated that Hussain posed a “high risk” of serious harm to the public and Recorder Dallas described the knife-point robbery of a corner shop as “a grave matter”.

Hussain has been remanded in custody following his arrest and his barrister Conor Quinn told Recorder Dallas that the solicitors had already paid a fee to the doctors surgery for the release of the records.

Mr Quinn said they were initially told it would take 28 days, but the estimate kept increasing.

He said the solicitors were told that part of the problem was that Hussain had changed surgeries and that meant it would take longer to get the records.

“Isn’t the answer going to be a witness summons to the practice manager to produce the records?” asked Recorder Dallas.

“It seems we are heading in that direction,” said Mr Quinn.

The judge said the solicitors should contact the surgery and tell them that the court process was being held up and that it had seven days to supply the records.

“That’s probably the best that I can do at this stage,” said Recorder Dallas.

“Hopefully that ultimatum may suffice to move things along.”

The judge noted that Hussain faced a significant custodial sentence for the robbery and he adjourned the case until June 25.