Millionaire hedge fund trader released early from jail
A millionaire city trader who attacked her husband with a knife has been freed on appeal by top judges - so she can be with her children.
Nasreen Alexandra Knight, 37, cut Julian Knight's hand with a blade, broke his glasses, repeatedly punched him and rammed her car into his after finding out he was having a relationship with her former friend, Erika Hillyer.
Mother-of four Knight also threatened to kill her husband's new partner, who was forced to hide after Knight turned up drunk at her ex's £1million farm house in Hough on the Hill and hunted around the property for her love rival with a knife.
Hedge fund trader Knight, of Hough Road, Freiston, near Grantham, was jailed for 15 months at Lincoln Crown Court in March.
She pleaded guilty to two counts of assault by beating, two of criminal damage, one of affray and one of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
But now, at London's Appeal Court, Mr Justice Goss has cut her sentence to nine months - after hearing that she has not seen her children since she was locked up.
The ruling means she will be freed straight away, having served her sentence.
Emma Goodall, her barrister, told the court: "She has had no contact with her children since she was incarcerated. That has not been facilitated by the father of the children. The children are not permitted to visit or speak to her as matters stand. Her husband has stipulated that any contact be through a third party."
No suitable intermediary had been agreed between the estranged couple, the barrister added. The only contact between the mother and her children since she was remanded in custody in January has been a Mother's Day card. Although she received it, she had not been allowed to reply to it, the court heard.
Mr Justice Goss, freeing her, said: "These offences were committed in the circumstances of a marital breakdown, which must have been stressful. The stress was immense and her behaviour can truly be said to be out of character. She has admitted her wrongdoing. She has effectively been deprived of all contact with her children while in prison.
"The impact on her children is a factor. She has done everything she can to rehabilitate herself in the circumstances. She has recognised that the marriage is over and that she must adjust her life to different circumstances when she is at liberty. This must have been a frightening incident of violence...(but) she has had the clang of the prison gates ringing in her ears for quite a while now.
"The level of violence and the persistent nature of the offending on two separate occasions, with the second on bail, are aggravating features. But the wound inflicted was an incision not a laceration. It was a minor cut. The sentencing judge didn't appear to attach sufficient significance to the fact that, although harm was caused in this case, it was not serious harm in physical terms.
"She is highly intelligent, having worked as a hedge fund trader. This was a singular set of circumstances. She was under great stress at the time. She was a highly intelligent woman who has made considered and constructive plans to move on with her life.
The judge concluded: "These were serious incidents committed over two days, the most serious being committed in breach of bail. However, we are persuaded that the judge took too high a starting point, before affording credit for the guilty plea in this case. Although there were aggravating factors, there were substantial mitigating factors.
"She was a woman of previous good character and had expressed remorse for her behaviour. These were serious offences, but the sentence should have been one of nine months. We do not consider that the judge wrongly exercised his discretion in refusing to suspend the sentence in the circumstances of the seizing of the knife, the infliction of injury with the knife and the threat of further injury with the knife. But the adjustment in the sentence in this case will now result in her immediate release."