Man jailed for nine years for raping and sexually assaulting schoolgirl in Wirral
A man has been jailed for nine years today for sexual assault and rape of a teenage girl in Wirral.
Andrew Smith, 47, who lives in Lancaster but is formerly from the Wirral area, has been convicted at Liverpool Crown Court of eight counts of indecent assaults against a child under 16 and one count of rape of a child under 16.
The sexual assaults began 15 years ago.
They took place in the Moreton and Hoylake areas of Wirral.
The victim gave evidence in court and described how she was groomed and abused and isolated from her family and friends.
Investigating officers traced five of her old school friends who gave compelling eyewitness accounts of the grooming and sexual abuse from Smith.
They described how they witnessed Smith kissing, touching and even having sex with the victim.
Detective Mike Gallagher from Merseyside Police’s Birkenhead CID said: “Andrew Smith is a manipulative man who preyed on an innocent young child when she was at a vulnerable stage of her life. This prosecution shows that he did not get away with it in the end and is now facing a long time behind bars.
“The victim’s bravery in coming forward and giving her evidence has been outstanding and absolutely crucial for a jury to find him guilty. She found the courage to report what had happened to her to the police and has been supported by us, the CPS and other agencies throughout the process.”