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A woman who was sexually assaulted as a child in Colchester has been praised for her bravery after secretly recording her attacker confessing to the crime 20 years later.
50-year-old William Walker, tattooist from Colchester, was jailed for nine years after being convicted of raping a child and seven counts of indecent assault, Essex Police said.
The attacks began in 1984 when the victim was five years old and continued until the age of 11.
But it was not until July 2010 when the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, confronted Walker and recorded their conversation on an iPhone concealed in her pocket that he was brought to justice.
She handed the 33-minute recording to police who launched an investigation.
Detective Sergeant Kerry Hackett, of the Essex Police child abuse investigation unit, said: "It takes an immense amount of courage for victims of sexual abuse to speak out.
"In this case the victim had the great presence of mind to use a mobile phone to record the conversation when she confronted Walker about the incident.
"Hopefully the sentence handed down by the court in this case will send a message to victims that we will treat your case with sensitivity and will punish those responsible for this terrible crime.
"The message to abusers is that no matter how many years ago you committed your crimes we will still seek to prosecute you and bring you to justice.''
Walker had denied all the charges but was found guilty by a jury at Chelmsford Crown Court on Friday (January 8th).