20 Jan 2009

Paedophile brothers jailed for life

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Colin Wicks, 46, and Lee Wicks, 41, encouraged each other to rape girls as young as four in a long list of depraved acts.

In one case, Lee Wicks’s girlfriend Tina Butcher, 42, helped him pin down and rape an eight-year-old girl.

On another occasion, the two brothers tied a young girl to a chair and forced her to perform a sex act.

The pair were convicted of more than 30 charges relating to sex attacks on youngsters, all aged under 14, between 1993 and 2005.

Sentencing the two brothers, Judge Phillip Statman said they had shown “not a shred of remorse” for their actions.

He said: “You, Lee, and you, Colin, have deprived these children of their childhood at a time when they were young and vulnerable, desperate for love and affection.”

The judge added that two young girls were “passed between them like sex toys to satiate their sexual proclivities”.

During a seven-week trial, a jury heard that on one occasion, in 2004, Lee Wicks dragged a girl off her bike under the pier at Sheerness, Kent, and assaulted her.

She later revealed that he threatened to kill her if she told anyone what happened.

The pair were arrested last year after some of their six female victims told police about the attacks.

The brothers and Miss Butcher denied any sexual activity with their victims.

Lee Wicks, of Minster, Kent, was convicted of eight charges of rape, six charges of indecency with a child, nine charges of indecent assault and one of sexual assault.

Colin Wicks, of Chatham, Kent, was convicted of four charges of rape, one charge of incitement to commit a serious sexual offence, three charges of indecency with a child and one charge of indecent assault.

They were sentenced to discretionary life terms at Maidstone Crown Court with a recommendation that each serve at least nine-and-a-half-years. Both men will remain on the sex offenders register for life.

Butcher, of Gillingham, Kent, was handed an eight-year sentence after being convicted of one count of rape.

After the hearing, investigating officer Detective Constable John Millham, of Kent Police, said: “The judge has seen fit to hand down a substantial sentence and it’s one that I think they deserve.

“The fact that they’re now in prison, without access to children, means that many children are now safe.

“These offences went far beyond anything I have ever dealt with, in terms of the number of victims; and the fact that the abuse lasted such a long time.

“The actual offences reached depths of depravity that I have never come across before and neither have my colleagues.”