March 2006

Life sentence for kidnap paedophile

A paedophile was jailed for life yesterday for kidnapping a 13-year-old boy.

Mark Owen, 32, took the teenager to his house where he plied him with alcohol. He abducted the schoolboy for 10 days before a family search located the pair on a beach.

Prosecutor Ieuan Bennett said, ‘The boy was given alcohol to drink – he was given both beer and vodka.

‘He said he was scared and didn’t know what was happening to him.’

Handyman Owen made him watch pornography. He also told him he had raped other children.

A family hunt found Owen with the teenager on a nearby beach at Barry.

Mr Bennett said, ‘They heard the boy had been seen on a beach and drove over there. They scoured the beach with binoculars and by chance located him. The defendant tried to escape but they detained him until police arrived.’

Peter Hayward, defending, said, ‘Owen tells me he had a genuine feeling of affection towards him.

‘It is unfortunate he has an unhealthy predilection for young boys.’

But Judge David Wynn Morgan said Owen had manipulated the boy for his own sexual gratification.

‘You took full advantage of the trust he placed in you to act out your own depraved fantasies. The court considers the seriousness of the offence is such as to justify imprisonment for life.’

Owen, of Penarth, near Cardiff, pleaded guilty to abducting a child and rape. He was jailed for life but will be available for parole in four years.