A man is starting a 12-year prison sentence for a series of sexual offences in Hastings against a young girl.
Kenneth Mann, 43, a plasterer, now of Seafield Road, Fareham, Hants, was sentenced at the Old Bailey on Monday, June 25.
He had been convicted at Hove Crown Court on March 24 of the rape and sexual assault of the girl, and of inciting her to commit an act of gross indecency.
He was acquitted of further alleged offences against the girl of indecency with a child, sexual assault, and indecent assault.
Mann will also be a registered sex offender for life and was given a Sexual Harm Prevention Order to last indefinitely, prohibiting him from any contact with the victim.
Detective Sergeant Steve Shimmons of the Hastings-based Safeguarding Investigations Unit said: “Mann came to know her [the victim] locally in Hastings and cynically took advantage of her innocence and vulnerability for several years in the early to mid 2000s, for his own sexual gratification, until he moved away to Hampshire.
“She kept this distressing experience to herself until four years ago when she first contacted us. Even at that stage she was reluctant to support a prosecution, but then came back to us again, and over time we gained her confidence to enable the investigation to progress.
“She bravely gave evidence in court, and this was crucial in helping to secure the guilty verdicts.
“If you or anyone you know is being, or has been, subjected to this sort of predatory behaviour, do not suffer in silence. Contact us online or by calling 101 and arrange to talk in confidence to experienced investigators.”
Further information and advice on child protection is available on the Sussex Police website – https://www.sussex.police.uk/advice/protect-yourself-and-others/child-protection/.