October 2021

Victim of paedophile left with nightmares 20 years after being raped and abused

The victim of a paedophile who raped and indecently assaulted her has spoken about how the abuse affects her life 20 years on.

Stephen Phillips, 60, of Cardiff, was convicted of raping and sexually abusing the victim when she was under 16 years old two decades ago following a trial at Newport Crown Court.

A sentencing hearing at the same court heard how Phillips initially exposed his genitals to the victim, who has lifelong anonymity, before forcing her to masturbate him and indecently touching her.

This culminated in him raping her three times with him plying the victim with cannabis on two occasions. He also told her that her father “would kill her” if she told others what was happening to her.

He denied the offences but his account was rejected by the jury who returned guilty verdicts in respect of 11 counts of sexual offences including rape, indecent assault, and gross indecency with a child.

In a victim personal statement read out to the court the victim described how the abuse made her feel like her “childhood had been taken away”.

She added: “Even now I get nightmares and never feel truly safe. It has taken a long time for me to talk about it… I am so angry he did this to me and forced me to live with this. He’s taken a part of me I can’t get back. I felt in limbo and stuck in that time while he carried on like nothing had happened.

“It has taken 20 years for me to speak out about him and to realise that it wasn’t my fault, I hadn’t done anything wrong. I am so angry at the world and so paranoid about everything around me. Only now I have spoken out do I feel like I may be able to get some closure.

“This will always be part of me now but now I feel like I will be able to start living my life instead of being stuck in a dark place with those dark clouds hanging over me.”

Sentencing, Judge Daniel Williams said: “The effect upon [the victim] has been very great and she has been left in essence untrusting, angry, and distressed.”

Phillips, of Addicott Close, Caerau, was sentenced to a total of 15 years imprisonment and was made subject to a sexual harm prevention order indefinitely.