April 2000

Paedophile jailed for reign of terror

Paedophile Raymond Blackwell was jailed for ten years after a 22-year reign of sexual terror on young girls.

Blackwell, 56, of Windrush Towers, Blackbird Leys, Oxford, confessed after he was sent a letter from one of his victims describing how he had destroyed her life.

He turned himself in to police and later admitted raping and sexually assaulting four girls, all aged between nine and 15.

He pleaded guilty to three counts of rape and four of indecent assault when he appeared at Oxford Crown Court in February. Nicholas Syfret, defending, told the court yesterday that Blackwell was a man on the “brink of a total moral and mental collapse”. He said: “His remorse is deep and genuine. Nothing can undo the harm he has done to those children and he does not ask for mercy, but he does ask for understanding.”

Mr Syfret claimed Blackwell had been abused as a child and remembered nothing before the age of 16.

Mr Justice Kennedy sentenced Blackwell to ten years for the rapes and six years for the indecent assaults, to run con- currently.

He said: “You know the wrong you have done. That you repent it, I have no doubt at all.

That there are circumstances in your background which may explain why you commenced offending, I do not question. But you were not a young man when you began this course of offending. “For more than 20 years you were either committing persistent rape or gross indecent assault on four girls.”

When released from jail Blackwell will be forced to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.