A man subjected a vulnerable young girl to a campaign of rape and sexual assaults lasting years.
The abuse started when the victim was aged just four or five, and continued until she was in her teens.
A judge labelled Andre Simpson a “very twisted individual” who had shown no remorse for what he had done, and also had put the girl through the ordeal of a trial.
The 54-year-old defendant subjected the girl a repeated rapes and assaults. Some of the offending happened more than 20 years but the abuse was not reported to the police at the time.
Simpson denied the offending but was convicted at trial at Swansea Crown Court.
In an impact statement which was read to court by prosecution barrister Robin Rouch, the victim said she effectively did not have a childhood because of what Simpson did to her, and the abuse left her struggling to trust people and being wary of older men. She said she still suffers from flashbacks and nightmares.
And she described the abuse as “the skeleton in the closet” that she had felt unable to report for so many years, adding that she hoped that by coming forward now and making a complaint to the police she had saved other children from suffering the same fate at the hands of the defendant.
As a victim of sexual offences, the woman has life-long legal anonymity.
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Simpson, of Bronwydd, Birchgrove, Swansea, had previously been convicted of 18 counts of rape, indecent assault, sexual assault, indecency with a child, and possessing indecent images of a child when he appeared in the dock for sentencing.
Judge Paul Thomas QC said Simpson had carried out a “campaign” of sexual abuse against his victim, and he told the defendant he was a “very twisted individual” who “satisfied your sexual lust at her expense” without giving any consideration to the emotional and physical harm he was causing.
The judge said the defendant would not, of course, be additionally punished for taking the matter to trial but he called the way he ran his defence – instructing his barrister to repeatedly accuse his young victim of being a cynical liar – “particularly distasteful”. The judge also noted that during the trial Simpson called into the question the ability and fairness of the police officer who had investigated the case, and sought to blame his sons for the presence of the indecent images found on his laptop, adding it seemed he was prepared to blame anyone in order to try to save his own skin.
Simpson was sentenced to a total of 21 years in prison, with an extended one year licence period. The defendant will serve two-thirds of that period before being released on licence to serve the remainder in the community. Simpson will be a registered sex offender for the rest of his life, and was made the subject of an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.
For information about support for victims of rape and sexual assault, visit South Wales Police’s advice page