A PAEDOPHILE has been jailed for 20 years four decades after he committed horrific abuse.
Retired engineer Michael Banks abused two girls in the 1970s and 1980s.
Both women were terrified of the man, described in court as a bully, but last year one of his victims worked up the courage to go to the police.
Detective Constable Rebecca Green, who investigated the case, says the two women can finally feel safe now that Banks is behind bars.
The 71-year-old still denies doing anything wrong and has shown no remorse for his actions.
Det Con Green, of the Eastern Area CID, said: ‘Considering that the victims are still frightened of him even now they have shown great bravery to come forward.
‘The conduct of the two women and their families throughout the trial was very dignified.
‘This case is a clear message regarding historic sexual abuse. It is taken very seriously by the police and the courts as this sentence shows.’
Banks, of Hilsea Crescent, Hilsea, was convicted of 11 charges, including offences of rape, indecent assault and gross indecency with a child, after a week-long trial at Portsmouth Crown Court.
The jury took less than three hours to find him guilty.
Both women, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, had to give evidence during the trial.
One of them said: ‘I was frightened of him and scared.
‘It was the shame of it and it was like it was my fault. I was made to feel like it was my fault.
‘I have lived with these nightmares for years. I have relived it, relived it and relived it.’
When Banks was arrested he told the police both women had made the allegations up.
Throughout the trial he shook his head and tutted as they gave their evidence.
Det Con Green said: ‘Certainly for the two victims these offences have had a somewhat dramatic effect on their lives.
‘Overwhelming relief is the best way to describe how they feel about the fact that he has been sentenced.
‘They don’t need to be scared any more because they know he is in prison.’
Sentencing him Recorder Michael Vere-Hodge QC said Banks had shown no remorse and had a bullying, overpowering nature.