January 2011

Army cadet force officer Mark Matthews abused teenage girl in New Forest

AN army officer, who has served in Bosnia and the Gulf War, was jailed for 30 months yesterday over his infatuation with a teenage girl.

Mark Matthews, 38, bombarded the 15-year-old with more than 1,000 text and computer messages, asking her about her love life and signing them off with an “x” for a kiss.

In one, he said how much he wanted to see her naked, commenting: “I sound like a right old perv, don’t I?”

Matthews, a captain with the Army Cadet Corps for ten years, once met her outside school when she was wearing her uniform and drove to the New Forest.

Prosecutor Richard Onslow said they kissed. She did not think it would go any further but after they had got out of his vehicle, they walked down a gravel track where he sexually abused her.

Following a complaint, Matthews was arrested but gave two no-comment interviews when quizzed by the police.

Matthews, of New Inn Road, Bartley, admitted sexual activity with a child.