Basingstoke Man Jailed For Sex Abuse

18 March 2013, 16:26 | Updated: 18 March 2013, 16:30

Two men have been jailed after being found guilty of sexually abusing four young girls in Hampshire and Lancashire over a period of 14 years.

Paul Thomas, 50, of Western Way, Basingstoke was sentenced to 19 years at Winchester Crown Court after being convicted of 25 charges involving four girls.

He was also made subject to an indefinite sexual offences prevention order (Sopo). 

Jerry Lee Howe, 40, of Dunnyshop Avenue, Accrington, Lancashire, was jailed for 11 years for three counts against one victim, including rape. 

He was also given a Sopo to last 20 years. The trial heard the attacks took place from the mid-1990s and stopped only in 2010.

Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, said: "The victims were, the Crown say, sexually abused. They were children and some of them very young.'' 

The barrister said the abuse stopped only when the victims reached 16. She explained that some were very used to the abuse and "they did as they were bid'' as the men attacked them.

The pair abused the victims separately at different times and in different locations, including Hampshire and Lancashire, over the years. 

Two other men, Paul Flynn, 30, of Bath Road in Reading, and Timothy Pittway, 49, of Mermaid Close, Winnersh, Berkshire, were acquitted of all child sexual abuse charges against them by the jury.

Thomas was found not guilty of six offences against two victims - one of whom was a boy - and Howe was found not guilty of three charges involving a girl.

Speaking after the case, Detective Inspector Scott Clarke, from Hampshire Police, said: "These men systematically abused and degraded children to the point where their victims felt their ordeal was just a part of growing up. 

"it is down to the courage of these women that these most evil of offenders have been brought to justice. 

"No one should have to experience the childhood that these victims did, one where sexual abuse was an almost daily occurrence.''