Ellie Gould family ‘disappointed’ after appeal against killer’s sentence rejected

The family of Ellie Gould say they are “bitterly disappointed” after their appeal against her killer’s sentence was rejected.

Ellie, from Calne in Wiltshire, was brutally murdered in her own home by Thomas Griffiths in May this year.

Griffiths, who was also 17-years-old at the time, repeatedly stabbed the teen in a “frenzied knife attack” after she ended their relationship.

He was jailed for a minimum of 12-and-a half years - a sentence Ellie’s mum Carole described as an “insult” on ITV News West Country earlier this week.

Carole Gould said Griffiths' sentence was an "insult". Credit: ITV News West Country

The family want Griffiths to serve at least 17 years behind bars - one for each year of Ellie’s life - and had written to the Attorney General’s Office, seeking a review.

But the Attorney General’s office has today confirmed the case will not be considered for an appeal, suggesting it had not met “the test” required.

‘Threshold is a high one’

In a short statement, a spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office said cases can only be referred to the Court of Appeal if a sentence is “not just lenient but unduly so”.

After careful consideration the Attorney General has concluded that he could not refer this case to the Court of Appeal. A referral under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme to the Court of Appeal can only be made if a sentence is not just lenient but unduly so, such that the sentencing judge made a gross error or imposed a sentence outside the range of sentences reasonably available in the circumstances of the offence.

Attorney General's Office
Ellie was murdered in May earlier this year.

The confirmation has come as a huge blow to the Gould family, who had hoped Griffiths’ sentence would be extended.

In a statement, the family said they feel like they have been “let down” by the British justice system.

We are bitterly disappointed that once again the British justice system has not only let us but also the nation down. When the Attorney General quotes in his letter to us that Griffiths’ crime not only shocked him, but also the nation, yet doesn’t feel it is appropriate to refer it to the Court of Appeal to have the lenient sentence reviewed, there is something very wrong with criminal justice in Britain today.

Ellie Gould's family