Thousands call for harsher sentence for one-punch killer

Petition calling for harsher sentence for one-punch killer, 35, jailed for three years and nine months for attacking bank boss outside The Ivy in London tops more than 30,000 signatures

  • Paul Mason, 52, was killed by Steve Allan, 35, in Soho, London in December 2020
  • Read more: Sister of bank boss who died after attack outside The Ivy in London

Tens of thousands of people have thrown their support behind a heartbroken sister’s campaign to keep the man who killed her millionaire brother in a one-punch blow locked up in jail.

Paul Mason, an adored brother and successful international banker, died age 52 following an unprovoked, brutal attack in a street in Soho, London, on December 15 2020.

The horrendous blow, which happened as he left the Ivy Club, in the capital’s West End, caused Paul to fall onto the ground and crack his head on the pavement.

Police officers and three-off duty nurses attended the scene, but the attack left him unconscious and he remained in a coma until he died in hospital six months later.

His killer, 35-year-old Steve Allan, pleaded guilty to manslaughter, after being found not guilty of murder in February.

Heartbroken Rachel Mason (right) set up a petition demanding the man who killed her brother Paul Mason, 52, in a one-punch blow to longer jail time 

Steve Allan, 35, (pictured) pleaded guilty to manslaughter, after being found not guilty of murder in February. He was jailed for three years and nine months last month 

Police released CCTV footage shown in court of Allan attacking Paul after he left The Ivy Club in Soho, London 

He was jailed for just three years and nine months.

This has outraged Paul’s grieving sister, who said her brother’s death, caused her other older brother Simon, 56, to relapse into alcoholism and die.

She has now launched the campaign in hope to overhaul the UK Sentencing Guidelines to prevent low sentences being given to violent offenders.

Her parents Ian, 80, and Linda, 79, are too upset to talk about the tragedy, so Rachel is articulating their their collective outrage. 

It has already got 30,000 supporters who are backing her plea, on the petition website

Rachel told the Mail last week: ‘The verdict is a travesty. In my opinion Steven Allan murdered Paul. How could it not be murder? He hit my kind, gentle, compassionate brother — who made no attempt to retaliate — repeatedly and with such ferocity that he fell to the ground and did not get up again.’

Her petition is calling for Allan’s sentence to be reviewed and extended by the Attorney General’s Office.

It also asks for an overhaul of sentencing for manslaughter in general.

The petition created on by Paul’s sister Rachel has now received 32,540 signatures since it was launched a week ago

Rachel (pictured) is appealing to the Attorney General against the leniency of the sentence and has launched a petition — so far 8,100 have signed — urging a review and extension of Allan’s jail term

Rachel’s adored brother Paul (left), a successful international banker, died aged 52 after an entirely unprovoked and brutal attack in London

Paul (pictured), an adored brother and successful international banker, died age 52 following an unprovoked, brutal attack in a street in Soho, London, on December 15 2020

Speaking of the effect her brother’s death had on the family she added: ‘Allan set off a chain of events that had a ripple effect. Simon died of alcohol poisoning as a result of losing his brother. He was in recovery, but he started drinking again. I believe it was a slow suicide.

‘Allan has two people’s blood on his hands. He killed Paul and he triggered Simon’s addiction because he couldn’t cope with the heartbreak of our brother’s death.

‘When the sentence was handed down, I was stunned. Allan could be out in just over a year, which is outrageous. His defence was that he was under the influence of alcohol and very anxious when he attacked Paul.

‘Well, I’m anxious. I’ve been diagnosed with PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder], but I don’t kill people.’

Allan had been out drinking before he stumbled upon Paul. He went on to accuse Paul of stealing his friend’s phone, leading him to punch and knock him to the ground.

He continued to attack Paul, who was a chief executive of Qatar National Bank, until he fell once more to the floor and his head on the pavement.

Allan, from Hook in Hampshire, fled the scene, but later handed himself in to police.’

Paul (centre) was the family’s linchpin, says Rachel. ‘He was the glue that held our little family together; the one we went to for support and inspiration, for guidance’

Scotland Yard had released footage of the attack that killed Paul, which his sister welcomed, asking ‘how can this not be murder?’

The CCTV video showed the ferocity of the assault as Allan is seen hitting Mr Mason three times – twice while he was already on the floor, trying to get back on his feet.

In Rachel’s online appeal she wrote: ‘This sentence is an insult to Paul, to us his family and to the wider UK society.

‘What punishment is this for brutally, without doubt in my mind after seeing the CCTV was a clear intention to do really serious harm to Paul? This was not a one punch killing, on the contrary.

‘It was a sustained, brutal attack, in public and fuelled by alcohol. Leaving witnesses traumatised.’

A spokesperson for Mr Mason’s family also said: ‘We are immensely disappointed that the jury did not all see the intent to cause serious harm that most people who saw the CCTV concluded.

‘We really hoped he would get a life sentence.’

A spokesperson for the Attorney General’s Office said: ‘We have received a request for this sentence to be considered under the Unduly Lenient Sentence (ULS) scheme. 

‘The Law Officers have 28 days from sentencing to consider the case and make a decision.’

A Sentencing Council spokesperson said: ‘We cannot comment on individual cases. The sentencing guidelines for manslaughter were published in 2018 following a full public consultation.’

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