“Gender Neutral” Sex Offender Appeals Sentence After Assault of Woman 

A 29-year-old Scottish man who repeatedly sexually assaulted a woman is appealing the 23-month jail sentence he was handed in February after pleading guilty to the crime.

Laura Miller, a male who identifies as “gender neutral,” was sentenced at Inverness Sheriff Court in Scotland on February 11, 2022, after pleading guilty to the charge of sexual assault on the day his trial was set to begin.

As first reported in The Press and Journal, which uniformly referred to Miller by ‘they/them’ pronouns, the assaults took place in 2017 at a property on the Isle of Skye in northwest Scotland. The Court heard that “on several occasions” Miller sexually assaulted a woman while she was in a state incapable of giving consent.

In at least one instance, Miller filmed himself while he was assaulting the woman. In the video, he is described as being seen “removing [his] victim’s clothing, exposing her private parts and touching [her] breasts.” He is also heard making vulgar sexual remarks of an offensive nature towards her. Details on Miller’s relationship to the woman as well as how he had access to her are not clear.

While Miller was sentenced to 23 months in jail, after which he would be required to register as a sex offender for a period of 10 years, his lawyers are appealing the prison term today at the High Court of Judiciary and requesting more lenient punishment. This is despite the fact that the Court noted Miller had a previous criminal record with two past convictions resulting in imprisonment, and his crime was “a matter of grave concern.”

During the initial sentencing, Miller’s lawyers had attempted to convince the court to issue a non-custodial sentence, which had been rejected at the time.

As previously noted by Reduxx, Miller’s legal gender status and any past aliases he held are unknown and have not been made public, nor have the details of the past crimes he committed which the Court referenced at sentencing.

As per Police Scotland policies, Miller’s crime may have been recorded as having been committed by a woman depending on how he self-identified at the time of his arrest.

According to a 2019 statement from then-Cabinet Secretary of Justice Humza Yousaf, Police Scotland “require[d] no evidence or certification as proof of gender identity other than a person’s self declaration.”

Similarly, under current Scottish Prison Service guidelines, Miller would also have been entitled to request housing at a women’s correctional institution, even if he had no legal documents demonstrating he has changed gender.

Miller’s current placement is unknown, and the appeal is ongoing.

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Jennifer Seiland
Jennifer Seiland
Jennifer is a founding journalist and opinion writer at Reduxx with a focus on crimes against women and human rights. She is located in the American south where she is a passionate animal welfare advocate and avid coffee drinker.