A Dragons’ Den contestant who was found guilty of 13 child sex offences, including sexual assault, has had his jail term increased.Richard Hazell, 48, of Plumpton Road in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, was jailed in August for four years and nine months at St Albans Crown Court.This was increased to seven years and three months following intervention by the Attorney General.Hazell was arrested after a girl’s father complained to social services.Three other victims then came forward, at least one of whom was under 13 at the time of the offences.He was found guilty of two charges of sexual assault on a child under 13, two of sexual assault and one charge of taking indecent photographs of children.The court was told 2,957 indecent images of children were found on his computers.He was also found guilty of seven charges of downloading indecent photographs of children and one of making an indecent pseudo-photograph of a child.At his trial it was revealed he had searched “can you be found guilty for downloading child porn if the files are deleted on your computer” prior to his arrest.
His sentence was increased on Thursday by Jeremy Wright QC MP under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme, following a review at the Court of Appeal.Mr Wright said: “Child sexual offences aren’t singular events, they are truly dreadful offences that will stay with victims for the rest of their lives. “They take away a child’s innocence and diminish their capacity to form relationships.”Refusing to admit his offence, despite overwhelming evidence, needlessly prolonged the suffering of the victims. I am pleased that the sentence has been increased.”Hazell was a contestant on the BBC show Dragons’ Den in 2007.He asked for £10,000 to invest in a diamond drill he had invented, but was turned down.
Source: BBC Bucks