March 2013

Wisbech man jailed for child rape

A Wisbech man has been jailed for 12 years for the rape and attempted rape of two young girls.

Andrew Ward, 32, from Council Road, appeared for sentencing at Norwich Crown Court yesterday after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing to raping a girl 10 times, when she was aged from eight to 10; the attempted rape of another girl aged under 10; and the possession and making of hundreds of indecent images of children.

Judge Mark Lucraft told Ward: “Your abuse started when the girls were just four or five years old. This was a catalogue of the most appalling abuse over a lengthy period. You also took photographs of the two girls for your own pleasure. You can only begin to imagine the psychological impact these offences will have on the children.”

The judge also made an indefinite sexual offences prevention order.

Chris Youell, prosecuting, said Ward pleaded guilty on February 15 to 10 charges relating to two girls and going back to 2005.

His crimes came to light thanks to an anonymous referral to police, and his computers were seized at his home.

Ward also has a previous conviction for child cruelty dating back 10 years. On that occasion he had broken an 18-month-old baby’s arm. William Carter, for Ward, said: “He understands that what he has done is very wrong, and he is genuinely remorseful.”

Afterwards, Det Sgt Bernie Bradshaw said: “His actions were pure evil and have left his victims deeply traumatised. They will have to live with his abuse for the rest of their lives. These were very serious offences and the sentence reflects the danger Ward poses to the public.”