A judge has praised a young rape victim whose courage in coming forward led to her abuser being jailed for 14 years.
Judge Colin Burn said the complainant, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, deserved “the highest credit” as he sentenced 23-year-old Peter Green for a catalogue of serious sexual offences against her and two other Calderdale girls.
Former Calderdale man Green, who had been living in Uxbridge, was found guilty of several offences of rape, attempted rape and sexual assault following a six-day trial at Bradford Crown Court in September.
The court heard that Green began his offending when he was about 13 and his first victim may only have been five years old.
Judge Burn said the offending may have started out as “sexual experimentation” involving the youngest girl, but it then turned into sustained abuse involving two other complainants.
The court heard that Green continued to offend until he was about 21 or 22.
Prosecutor Stephen Wood read from the complainants’ victim impact statements in which they described the on-going effects of Green’s abuse.
One girl described how Green’s crimes had “damaged her as a person” and she had rarely been happy since the offences came to light.
She said during the trial she felt like she was being targeted and not believed and described how Green told her during the abuse that “bad things” would happen if she told anyone.
Another victim said in her statement: ”I can say that I hate Peter and I hope he gets a long sentence and I get justice for what happened.”
She said the worst part was giving evidence to the court because she thought they did not believe her and she was being made out to be a liar.
“I cannot understand why Peter did what he did to me,” she said.
“I’m disgusted with him for taking advantage of me.”
The third complainant said she had kept the abuse a secret and broke down when the police came to see her.
She also said that giving evidence was the hardest thing and she felt she was not believed.
Barrister Chloe Fordham, for Green, said he felt a bit of an outsider as a teenager and said he had been bullied at school.
Green showed no emotion in the dock as Judge Burn sentenced him to a total sentence of 14 years in prison with an extended licence period of one year.
The court heard he could apply to be released at the half-way stage, but the Parole Board would have to be satisfied that he did not pose a risk.
Judge Burn also ordered Green to register as a sex offender with the police for the rest of his life and imposed a sexual harm prevention order which will be in force for the next 30 years.
After the sentencing Mr Wood highlighted the work of the police team who had brought Green to justice.
He said the team had worked extended hours, including rest days, and had travelled the length and breadth of the country during the investigation.
Detective Chief Inspector David Shaw said; “I would like praise the victims for their bravery and courage in coming forward.
“I hope that the conviction and today’s sentencing helps to bring some closure to them that they can move forward with their lives.
“I would also like to recognise the dedication and tenacity of the colleagues involved in this investigation, which has once again highlighted their continued commitment to our communities.
“Anyone who has been the victim of sexual abuse should feel confident in coming forward to the police. We have specialist teams who will take you seriously, deal with you sensitively and do everything within our power to bring those responsible to justice.”