BRAVE Rachel Williams has spoken of her ‘elation’ after her depraved adoptive father who subjected her to years of sexual abuse was finally put behind bars.
And the 47-year-old hopes seeing Raymond Bath jailed for 12 years for his ‘appalling’ crimes will give other victims of abuse the courage to speak out.
Finally he has got what he deserves. Let us hope that he is never set free.Rachel Williams
Mrs Williams, from Emsworth, was groomed and abused by Bath, now aged 72, in the 1970s.
Decades later, and with the support of her family, she found the strength to report him to the police.
Mrs Williams, who waived her right to anonymity to speak out, told The News: ‘It has been a long time but to see that sentence, I am elated.
‘I don’t know why I didn’t do it earlier. It was one of those things that I have been thinking about for at least the past 20 years.
‘It came to 2012 and I made a decision that actually what he had done had been ruining my life for all that time and I needed to do something about it.
‘It had been horrendous.
I was looking for justice and now I have it.
‘Finally he has got what he deserves. Let us hope that he is never set free.’
Her adoptive father Bath denied the claims and the case was taken to trial at Portsmouth Crown Court, where Mrs Williams had to give evidence.
Bath was found guilty of three counts of indecency with a child, two counts of indecent assault and one count of rape, which took place between 1970 and 1977, when Mrs Williams was around five to nine years old.
Judge Ian Pearson called the abuse ‘appalling’ and sentenced Bath, of Nelson Avenue, North End to 12 years in prison.
Bath, who used to work as a machinist at the Metal Box factory in Burrfields Road, Copnor, adopted Mrs Williams in 1968. He and his wife at the time lived in Grayshott Road, Southsea until 1970, when they moved to Chalkridge Road, in Cosham.
With the crimes taking place decades ago, Mrs Williams was unsure whether her complaint would be taken seriously.
But the grandmother of four and mother of three praised the work of sexual violence counsellors at Hampshire police and encouraged other victims of child abuse to speak out.
She said: ‘I really thought it would never ever happen.
‘I am hoping that anybody else will now have the strength.’
Police welcome sentence
POLICE welcomed the 12-year jail sentence given to Raymond Bath for abusing his adopted daughter in the 1970s.
Detective Constable Nick Wieczorek, of Hampshire police, said: ‘We welcome the sentence imposed on Raymond Bath for the horrendous crimes he committed. It reflects how seriously these crimes are taken by the criminal justice system.
‘This was a complex investigation which took some time to bring to court and I would like to thank the victim for her patience and bravery throughout. I would also like to reassure members of the public that we take reports of these crimes extremely seriously, and would encourage anyone wishing to report anything, to come forward and speak to an officer.’