A teenager from South Tyneside who raped his young cousin has been warned he could be locked up.
The 16-year-old forced the child to perform a sexual act in his bedroom and also performed a sex act on the victim during two separate incidents in as many months.
South Tyneside Juvenile Court heard the youth urged his victim to remain silent about his crimes and denied two counts of rape of a child and one charge of inciting a boy to engage in sexual activity.
But he was convicted of the offences following a two-day trial.
The victim gave evidence via videolink during the trial.
He said: “He said don’t tell anyone, or we won’t be cousins any more.”
The court heard that the child was also shown graphic sexual images on the defendant’s computer during the second incident.
Forensic scientist Sally Hill told the trial that forensic test results were in keeping with the defendant having performed a sex act on the boy.
The defendant claimed that he was alone with the boy for less than a minute when cross-examined by prosecutor Mark Guiliani, but the court heard that he admitted in an earlier police interview to being alone with him for five minutes.
Mr Guiliani said: “You said don’t tell anyone or you won’t be his cousin. You said that because you knew how important you were to him.
“You thought you could get away with it by abusing your friendship, you didn’t think he would tell anyone.”
David Hatfield, defending, said the boy was of good character and had never been in court before and had denied the charges from the outset.
District Judge Roger Elsey said: “I am satisfied that the account of the complainant is a truthful one.
“There will be a report by the youth offending team before sentencing. One option I will have to consider is a custodial sentence because these are serious offences and this was a an ordeal for the child.”
The defendant was granted conditional bail until sentencing on September 9.