December 2004

Corporal jailed for raping child

An army corporal found guilty of sexually assaulting a young girl over a seven-year period has been sentenced to 12 years in prison.

John Haynes, 37, formerly of Swanton Morley, Norfolk, had denied 11 counts of rape and four of indecency at Norwich Crown Court.

The court was told the sexual abuse began when the girl was six and had increased as Haynes “groomed” her.

Haynes – who now lives in Carmarthen, Wales – has been discharged from the army.

‘Tragedy’ for children

Cynthia Cruickshank, defending Haynes, said: “He is bewildered and upset. He strenuously maintains his innocence.

“He has lost everything since the allegations were made. His job, home and wife, all in a short space of time.”

In sentencing, Deputy High Court Judge Sir John Blofeld said: “No doubt the child’s experiences will live with her to her dying day.

“The tragedy is when young children are prevailed up on to accept unwelcome caresses, they feel guilty and by telling the truth she will feel responsible for you serving a long prison sentence.”

Haynes has been placed on the sex offenders’ register for life and banned from working with children.