The teenager who raped and murdered six-year-old Alesha MacPhail on the Isle of Bute last summer has had his minimum sentence reduced by three years.

Aaron Campbell was jailed for 27 years before parole earlier this year, but claimed his sentence was 'excessive' and appealed the decision last month.

The then-16-year-old had taken young Alesha from her bed in July 2018, before carrying her to nearby woodland where he raped and murdered her.

Judges have now decided that the minimum term the 17-year-old will serve before being considered for parole will be 24 years.

READ MORE: Mum of tragic girl 'livid' at Aaron Campbell appeal grant

The victim's mother, Georgina, had just this month set up a new charity - Alesha's Beaming Smile - to commemorate her daughter.

Glasgow Times:

She had previously branded Campbell a 'rat' after his appeal bid was granted in May.

Three of the country's top judges say a punishment part of 24 years would be 'appropriate to reflect the appellant's youth'.

Campbell's solicitor Brian McConnachie used the case of Luke Mitchell, who murdered his girlfriend Jodi Jones when he was just 15, to back up their appeal.

READ MORE: Alesha MacPhail's family plan Airdrie candlelit vigil

He said the sentence was 'excessive and amounts to a miscarriage of justice' due to his age.

The reduction means that Campbell will now be 40 before he can be considered for release - a day which his solicitor said: "may never come".

Information published in the judgement included details from an interview Campbell did with psychologist Dr Macpherson.

It said: "He reported that he continued to experience thoughts of killing
and having sex with children and having sex with dead bodies.

"He wished to point out that he was not fantasising about this, but 'acting on his thoughts.'

"In the deceased’s home, 'once I realised she was a child, I started having thoughts about raping her, about killing her.'

"He said 'Four questions – murder, rape, necrophilia and paedophilia. All I thought
about was killing her once I saw her.'

READ MORE: Aaron Campbell says sentence was 'miscarriage of justice'

"He appeared irritated by the medical evidence that the child was alive at the time of the sexual assault as this would not have fulfilled his desire for necrophilia."

The ruling from Lord Drummond Young, Lord Menzies and Lord Justice Clerk said: "Against the cases to which we have made reference, a punishment part in excess of 20 years was plainly merited.

"We have concluded that a punishment part of 24 years would be appropriate to reflect the appellant's youth.

"We will accordingly allow the appeal to the extent of substituting that period for the sentence imposed."

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