June 2013

Child rapist jailed after a decade of abusing girl

A CHILD rapist has been jailed for 15 years after repeatedly sexually abusing a schoolgirl for almost a decade.

Andrew Gregory, 48, who gave his address as Birch Farm Caravan Park in Mouldsworth abused the girl for a total of nine years from when she was just seven years of age, a court heard yesterday.

Between 2001 and 2011 he subjected her to horrific abuse.   

His abuse only came to light last May when the victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, found the courage to report her ordeal. Police arrested Gregory but he claimed she was lying.

He was due to go on trial at Chester Crown Court yesterday but new evidence came to light and Gregory admitted six counts of rape and further offences of sexual assault, indecency with a child and inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

Judge David Hale told Gregory his “long-standing campaign of persistent sexual abuse” had robbed the girl, now a young adult, of her childhood.

“You have pleaded guilty to a catalogue of serious sexual abuse covering a period of about nine years,” he told Gregory.

“The sexual abuse began, as it often does, at a relatively low level and became so commonplace to her and so commonplace to you that she submitted to your sexual desires. You robbed her of her childhood.”

Gregory, was sentenced to 15 years in prison and was told he would be placed on the sex offenders register for life. He was already serving an eight month sentence for stealing thousands of pounds from a caravan park .

John Wyn Williams, prosecuting, told the court the girl trusted Gregory, who worked as a lorry driver. He said: “He abused that trust for his own sexual gratification and subjected her to a catalogue of sexual abuse.

“The abuse developed from indecent assault through to full penetrative rape when she was 13.”

Mr Wyn Williams said Gregory had abused the girl in the cab of his lorry, made her watch pornographic films and asked whether another man could join in with them.

“She suffers from paranoia and she suffers panic attacks because of what happened to her,” said Mr Wyn Williams.

“She suffers through lack of confidence, does not trust people and has flashbacks. It changed her whole life.”

Mr Wyn Williams said the girl moved away from the Chester area but Gregory would send her “nasty and controlling” messages in an attempt to keep her quiet but eventually she built up the courage to report the abuse.

Gregory denied any wrongdoing and pleaded not guilty to all charges in February, but indicated he would be changing his plea when a new witness came forward.

Mark Le Brocq, defending, said there was very little he could say in defence of Gregory, but told the court he had shown “some remorse” and his late guilty pleas had saved his victim from the ordeal of giving evidence.

Judge Hale made Gregory the subject of a Sexual Offences Prevention Order, banning him from associating with children and from ever trying to contact his victim.