Eight in court facing string of child rape and abuse charges

Attacker followed his victim for a mile before assault in city alleyway

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A woman and seven men are to appear in court today to enter pleas to charges relating to the repeated rape and abuse of two young children by a worldwide internet child abuse ring.

The eight defendants are facing a total of 122 charges at Portsmouth Crown Court, including rape and sexual assault of children aged under 13 and making and distributing indecent photos of children.

Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, told a previous hearing that the case involved the alleged abuse of two children aged under 13.

It also involved indecent photos being distributed over the internet and 2,000 pages of internet chat logs dating between 2008 and 2010, the court heard.

Details of the charges facing the defendants were heard at a previous hearing and involved the alleged repeated rape and sexual assault of the two children as well as forcing them to carry out sex acts on some of the defendants.

The allegations involve the defendants Robert Hathaway and Melissa Noon engaging in sexual activity in front of the children.

And the charges claim that the pair organised for the children to be abused by others.

Hathaway, 36, of Tyseley Road, Somers Town, faces 67 charges including rape, attempted rape, causing a child to engage in sexual activity, and engaging in sexual activity in front of a child.

His charges also include counts of possessing, making and distributing indecent photos of children and facilitating the commission of a child sex offence.

Noon, 29, also of Tyseley Road, Somers Town, faces 16 charges including sexual assault, causing a child to engage in sexual activity, engaging in sexual activity in front of a child, facilitating the commission of a child sex offence, child cruelty and possessing indecent photos.

Lee Parson, 37, of Arundel Street, Landport, faces eight charges involving indecent photos of children, and Several of the defendants are charged with possessing indecent photos of children and in some cases extreme pornography.

Daniel Bell, 26, of St James Road, Emsworth, faces a total of 10 charges including aiding a child rape, facilitating a child sex offence, and possessing and attempting to distribute indecent photos of children.

Simon Hilton, 28, of Wolsey Road, north London, Stephen Fraser, 41, of Hemingford Road, Cambridge and Mark Day, 45, of Whitefriars Meadow, Kent also face charges.

A trial date of September 26 has been set by judge Roger Hetherington.