South Shields rapist jailed for 17 years

An engineer who raped a teenager more than three decades ago has been jailed for 17 years.

Monday, 15th November 2021, 4:49 pm
Updated Monday, 15th November 2021, 4:50 pm

John Wilson groomed his victim with "illicit treats" such as cigarettes and threatened bad things would happen to her family if she reported him.

Wilson, now 59, denied two charges or rape and one of indecent assault during a trial at Newcastle Crown Court but was found guilty of all charges.

Judge Stephen Earl said the victim, who gave evidence against Wilson, was caused "severe psychological harm" by what happened to her.

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John Wilson.

Wilson, of Waverdale Way in South Shields, will serve two thirds of the jail term and must sign the sex offenders register for life.

Judge Earl told him: "The fact of the matter is, at the trial the complainant was credible and believable and at times during your evidence you were neither.

"It's for these reasons the jury had no difficulty finding you guilty.

"The jury were clearly not impressed by you but by the complainant."

The judge added: "She has carried this burden and for that you must pay the price."

Jamie Hill QC, defending, said Wilson, who had a "brilliant career" in engineering after the offences, continues to maintain his innocence.

The court heard Wilson has stayed out of trouble since, has health problems and submitted a number of character references to the court.