Following a Thames Valley Police investigation, a woman from Milton Keynes has been sentenced after she was convicted of soliciting to commit murder.
Whitney Franks, aged 26, of Bury Street in Newport Pagnell, was found guilty by unanimous jury verdict of the offence following a trial lasting five days at Reading Crown Court, which concluded on 22 July.
Returning to the same court yesterday (22/9), Franks was sentenced to 12 years’ imprisonment.
Between 17 August 2020 and 1 September 2020 in Milton Keynes, Franks embarked on a campaign of making threats to kill a victim, a woman aged in her twenties.
The investigation commenced as a result of a report from the BBC, who were investigating the Dark Web.
The victim never came to harm, and Franks was arrested on 10 September 2020, before being charged by a postal requisition on 25 August last year.
Case investigator Lindsey Devoy of Milton Keynes CID, said: “Following a thorough investigation, Franks was arrested and interviewed on 10 September 2020.
“Her mobile phone and iPad were seized and evidence was located that proved she had downloaded browsers to access the dark web.
“Franks set up Bitcoin accounts and made a request for the murder of a female victim.
“Given the wealth of evidence, I am very pleased that the jury has unanimously convicted Franks of this serious offence.
“She intended to have the victim killed and took significant steps to ensure that this happened over a protracted period of time.
“This is an offence born out of jealously and deceit.
“I would like to thank our witnesses and victim for their patience in waiting for the trial and the strength and courage she showed to give evidence in court.
“Our victim was safeguarded from as soon as we were made aware of the possible threat to her life and she can finally rest more easily now that Franks has been convicted and is behind bars.
“Making threats to kill and preparing to carry out these threats is an extremely serious offence, and Franks has now been handed a significant prison sentence.
“I hope that the conclusion of this case will serve as solace for Franks’s intended victim. I would like to commend her for her courage and patience while we investigated this case and brought it to court.”