A KENDAL repeat offender should be detained in hospital and treated to try and prevent him from committing more crimes, a medical expert has concluded.

But heavily convicted Linley Hassan, 34, must wait to be formally sentenced for his latest brush with the law after a judge heard there was no hospital bed yet available.

Hassan had been sentenced at Carlisle Crown Court in May last year for a sexual assault he committed in August, 2021.

As part of his punishment, Hassan, of Lowther Street, was made subject to the strict terms of a sexual harm prevention order (SHPO). This imposed a number of restrictions designed to curb his offending.

In June, Hassan was back at the crown court where he admitted breaching the order. He had done so on December 7 2022, when, without reasonable excuse, he entered a shop staffed by a single female — a stranger to him — when he had no intention of purchasing any items from the premises.

Hassan’s case was adjourned for the preparation of background reports.

At the crown court on Monday he was due to be sentenced for the breach.

Defence barrister Anthony Parkinson said it had latterly been concluded, amid some concern, that Hassan was fit to plead guilty to flouting the order.

Two psychiatrists had been asked to assess Hassan. Their conclusions were that the most appropriate course of action would be for Hassan to be detained in hospital and treated under an order which can be used as an alternative to prison or community punishment.

But the court heard one of the conditions of such an order was that hospital detention should start within 28 days of this being made.

And Mr Parkinson said in an address to Judge Nicholas Barker: “We are not in a position today to say that bed space will be available (within that time frame).“

Referring to the lead psychiatrist’s hospital order conclusion, Judge Barker said: “Underlying and underpinning that recommendation is the consideration that such an order will provide the defendant with the best prospect of rehabilitation.

“In his view, neither an immediate custodial sentence nor a sentence served in the community will provide him with the treatment and support that will assist him.”

Judge Barker concluded it was in Hassan’s best interests for a hospital order to be imposed. As a result he adjourned the case for 14 days, to September 8, when an update will be provided. It is hoped a hospital bed will be available in due course.

Hassan — who is deaf and was assisted in court by a sign language interpreter as he appeared in court remotely over a video link — will remain remanded in custody in the meantime.

He signed: “I am not happy” as he learned of the adjournment and then appeared to utter an obscenity before storming out of the video booth before the hearing had formally concluded.