A transsexual who was convicted of attempting to rape a shop assistant just days after being released from prison for killing her lover, has had her sentence reduced by the Court of Appeal.

Karen Lawson, aged 24, was known as Mark Jones prior to a sex change operation, pleaded guilty to attempted rape in Bolton Crown Court in July of 2003.

Lawson was given a life sentence because she had previously been convicted of the manslaughter of her boyfriend while she was living as a gay man.

The transsexual who suffers from gender dysphoria (a gender identity problem) smothered her gay lover with a pillow before strangling him with a pair of tights after an argument over Lawson’s problems.

Five days after her release from prison, she attempted to rape a female shop assistant in Prestwich. The Judge at her trial refused to set a minimum tariff for Lawson to serve because she was deemed a danger to the public.

However, the Court of Appeal ruled that despite her serious crimes, Lawson should not be jailed forever; she will now have to serve a minimum of three and a half years before being eligible for parole.