June 2023

‘Despicable’ husband and wife from Bedford jailed after abusing children for over two decades

A husband and wife from Bedford have been jailed for almost 30 years for the ‘dreadful’ abuse of several children, spanning over two decades.

Martin Bayes was convicted of 15 charges of child rape, indecent assault and sexual assault against children, as well as attempting to pervert the course of justice when he threatened one victim if they told anyone.

The 52-year-old was handed a 22-year sentence, with an additional five years on licence.

His wife Dianne Bayes was jailed for five years after she was found to have been complicit in his offending.

She was convicted of three charges relating to child cruelty, assault and encouraging children to engage in sexual activity.

The court was told that Dianne Bayes, who had also denied the charges, had encouraged a 12-year-old to have sex with a 15-year-old boy, as well as verbally abusing and physically assaulting victims.

Both Martin and Dianne Bayes of Luke Place, Bedford, were found guilty following a five-week trial at Luton Crown Court

In a victim personal statement, one woman said the offences caused her to self-harm, live on anti-depressants and she now lacked trust in people, the court heard.

Another victim said: “No-one deserves to endure what I went through.”