March 2013

24-year-old Penygroes man admits sexual activity with a teenage girl

A 24-YEAR-OLD man who pleaded guilty to sexual activity with a teenage girl has been given a three-year community order.

David Leighton Rees, who was living in Penygroes at the time of the offence in March 2012, appeared before Swansea Crown Court for sentence for two counts of sexual activity with a child.

It was revealed that sexual activity referred to the touching of her breasts outside her clothing.

Tom Scapens, prosecuting, said the victim’s mother had become aware of the situation, after her other daughter received a photo on her mobile phone of her sister and Rees — known as Leighton — embraced in a kiss.

Following this, she removed the phone from the daughter in question because she was concerned.

”She was told earlier that day it was believed her daughter was in a relationship with the defendant,” said Mr Scapens.

“But at the time she dismissed that as a joke. Having seen the text message, she became concerned.”

The police were contacted and spoke to the mum and daughter about the offence.

The mum said she’d previously noticed contact between her daughter and Rees, but warned him off her after he joked they’d make a good pair when they were both described as vain.

But after another encounter the pair became friends on Facebook, with Rees later asking her for her mobile phone number and they began to text.

Some messages related to Rees asking her to stay over, with one saying: ”If you’re not ready I understand.”

Another message said: ”Let’s not get seen, always delete text messages.”

Mr Scapens said it was clear evidence of the defendant knowing her age and trying to avoid detection.

The court heard they met at a park on two occasions and he asked her when she planned on losing her virginity.

”She told him when she was 16. He said he would wait,” said Mr Scapens.

During the second time they met and kissed, he touched her breast over her clothing twice.

”She asked him to stop doing so, and the defendant did,” said Mr Scapens.

Janet Gedrych, mitigating for Rees, said: ”The effect of these proceedings has been profound.

”Crown Court has been a terrifying experience for him and he has no intention of putting himself in such a position again.”

Ms Gedrych said Rees had since moved from Penygroes to Bryn Park, Morriston, Swansea, and had no contact with anybody in his old village. ”He is in a relationship with a girlfriend of his own age,” she added.

Recorder Christopher Clee QC sentenced Rees to a three- year community order, with supervision requirement. As part of this, the probation service will assess whether Rees is suitable for a sexual offenders’ group programme.

He will have to go on the sexual offenders’ register for five years, and must pay a £60 victim surcharge.