Gas-sniffer jailed after ‘ruinous’ rape of teen

A gas-sniffing drifter who subjected a vulnerable teenager to a harrowing rape ordeal behind a nightclub has been given a 16-year extended prison sentence.

Paul Lupton was arrested in Halifax the day after he forced his 19-year-old victim onto the ground and raped her in a bin area behind the Warehouse club in Huddersfield.

Earlier in the night the powerfully-built 29-year-old had asked for a cigarette from the teenager, who was a stranger to him, and Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said Lupton had clearly identified her as an object of fascination and likely followed his victim and attacked her when she was in the quiet alleyway off Zetland Street last November.

Prosecutor Andrew Hatton outlined details of the traumatic effects of the rape on the teenager, who was only making her third visit to Huddersfield. He explained that although the victim had suffered difficulties prior to the rape, since the attack she had been hospitalised and repeatedly self-harming.

In a victim impact statement she said Lupton had ruined her life and she didn’t think she would get over it.

‘’He has ruined my life and will probably be the death of me,’’ she stated.

Lupton initially denied any contact with the victim, but after his DNA was found to match a semen sample he claimed the teenager had consented to sex with him. He continued to deny the rape allegation but when the complainant attended at court for his trial he finally entered a guilty plea.

Lupton, who gave an address of Apsley Crescent, Manningham, Bradford, was said by his barrister Neil Clark to have been under the influence of the gas on the night of the attack.

Judge Durham Hall described the circumstances of the rape as ‘’chilling, harrowing and aggravated.’’

He said the victim had been brave enough to make a complainant but the effect upon her had been ruinous.

‘’It seems to this court that a fine young woman has been destroyed by the actions of a rapist and that is the effect of this offence which after murder must be seen for what it is.’’

Lupton will serve an eight-year sentence behind bars, but following his release from prison he will be subject rigorous licence conditions for remainder of the 16-year term.