May 2016

Lower Earley rapist jailed for seven and a half years

Brian-Russell

A man from Lower Earley has been jailed for seven and a half years for two rape offences and sexual activity with a child.

Brian Russell, 30, of Clevedon Drive was given two seven and a half year sentences for raping an underage girl and a further four year sentence for having sex with another underage girl.

The concurrent sentences were handed down at Reading Crown Court on Friday, May 13.

Judge Ian Grainger called the night of the offences, on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 a “squalid private orgy” where one girl was raped twice by Russell.

One of the victims knew Russell before the incident and the two girls stayed at his home after finding themselves without a place to sleep on the night of Monday, August 11, 2014.

Judge Grainger admitted one girl had sex with Russell consensually but said: “The law is there to protect girls against themselves as well as those like you prepared to take advantage of their youth.”

The counsel for the defence, Steven Talbot Hadley said his client “vehemently denies the allegations”.

Russell, a father-of-six, was found guilty by a unanimous jury vote of one count of sexual activity with a child and unanimously guilty of one count of rape, the jury reached a majority verdict on the second count of rape on Monday, April 25 following a week-long trial at Reading Crown Court .

Russell was arrested on Thursday, October 2, 2014 and charged with the offences on Friday, May 15 last year.