Predator who raped young boy at waterpark cries as he's jailed

·3-min read
(Reach)
(Reach)

A paedophile who subjected a young boy to years of abuse including raping him at a water park cried as he was jailed for 21 years.

Oliver Roughley put his victim through a "campaign of rape" over the course of three years, leading to the child attempting suicide.

He was jailed for 21 years on Thursday but continues to maintain his innocence.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that the now 24-year-old carried out the abuse when he was in his late teens.

Roughley, from St Helens, groomed the boy by buying him presents including toy cars and teddy bears.

He also used violence to ensure his silence, including by twisting his arm behind his back.

He kept a pair of the child's underwear in his bedroom and messaged him telling him that he loved him.

Roughley first assaulted the boy when he was aged seven by touching his penis. He then "told him not to tell anyone or he would go to jail and never see him again".

His abuse escalated to raping the youngster in the cubicles of a swimming bath in South Liverpool.

Police later discovered 32 pictures of the boy naked in the defendant's bedroom.

Additional indecent images of other children were found on his computer.

A statement read out on behalf of the boy's mum highlighted the "massive impact" Roughley's crime has had. She said her son had "become a sad and angry boy" who had tried to take his own life "on more than one occasion".

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Members of the court were visibly shocked by the account of Roughley's abuse. (PA)
Members of the court were visibly shocked by the account of Roughley's abuse. (PA)

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The youngster also cannot be hugged by family members as he "doesn't want to be touched". The statement added: "It has ruined him mentally and turned his life upside down.

"I don't know if he will ever recover. My son has been given a life sentence."

A statement by the boy's grandma said: "How dare you subject our grandson to such pain and hurt for your perverted needs?

"You took his innocence and childhood. You have shown no remorse for your actions and seem to think you have done nothing wrong."

David Watson, defending, told the court: "What can be advanced on his behalf is very limited. The defendant has no previous convictions to factor in, nor any behaviour outside of these offences.

"I draw the court's attention to the age of the defendant and his maturity, or lack thereof. It is inevitable there will be a very significant custodial sentence."

Roughley appeared to be shaking his head at points during his sentencing but hung his head, closed his eyes and cried as he learned his fate.

Sentencing, Judge David Swinnerton said: "You were sexually attracted to him and had a sexual interest in young boys, as is clear from the images of other children you had on your computer. You both groomed and coerced him and bought him things so he didn't tell.

"You have not only damaged him badly, but his whole family. You have shown no remorse and continue to deny any wrongdoing whatsoever.

"You deny any sexual interest in children. That is plainly a lie."

Roughley was handed an extended licence period of five years and a sexual harm prevention order and notification requirement to run indefinitely. He will serve at least two-thirds of his sentence before being eligible for release.