A MAN who repeatedly abused and raped two young girls when he was aged between 10 and 15 has been jailed.
Craig Evans, 27, was found guilty by a jury of a series of offences against the two girls, dating back to late 1990s and early 2000s.
These were very traumatic offences for the victims, and I would like to thank them for their courage throughout the caseDetective Constable Hannah Waterman
Evans, a father-of-one, was jailed for 11 years at Portsmouth Crown Court by a judge after the trial. He denied the charges.
Judge Ian Pearson said: ‘The effects on the younger girls have been traumatic.
‘Clearly these events have blighted their lives.’
He added: ‘These offences are very serious indeed.
‘This was a significant breach of trust, you sexually exploited much younger girls for your own purposes.
‘This was over a period of years, not just single incidents.’
The two victims cannot be named for legal reasons.
The jury found Evans guilty of four counts of indecent assault and two rapes, all of which were multiple incident counts, meaning they happened more than once.
He was also found guilty of one charge of gross indecency.
Judge Pearson said he had hoped a pre-sentence report would show Evans’ remorse for the attacks.
But he added: ‘No remorse is there. You continue to blame the victims for fabricating and lying and conspiring against you.’
Judge Pearson said he would sentence Evans as an adult, but would reduce his prison term in line with guidance on youth sentences.
Addressing Evans, Judge Pearson added: ‘This was really a campaign of sexual exploitation.’
Dressed in a white T-shirt and heavily tattooed, Evans stared at the public gallery as he was taken down to the cells by the dock officer.
Both his family and that of the victim were present in court for the sentencing hearing and one of them shouted abuse at the other after Evans was jailed.
In a statement released after the hearing, investigating officer Detective Constable Hannah Waterman praised the victims for coming forward and welcomed the sentence.
Det Con Waterman said: ‘These were very traumatic offences for the victims and I would like to thank them for their courage throughout the case.
‘Craig Evans’ sentence reflects the seriousness of the offences, which were carried out over a number of years against the victims.’
Evans was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for life and was also barred from working with children.
Judge Pearson said he was satisfied that Evans, of Sultan Road, Buckland, was not a continued risk to children.
Chris Gair, defending, said: ‘It’s a tragic case for the victims, for Mr Evans, for his family. Clearly this matter is going to blight the rest of his natural life.’
Mr Gair added Evans was under 15 at the time of the majority of the offences.