A MAN has been jailed for sexually abusing his foster daughter over a prolonged period of time.
The man, aged in his 50s, was jailed for nine years and four months at Gloucester Crown Court on Friday.
The court heard the man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, began abusing the girl after her 16th birthday.
It is estimated that he abused her more than 100 times during about a year at his home in the Stroud area.
Prosecutor Sam Jones said the defendant and his wife had been registered foster carers for several years before the girl moved in.
“A foster carer is in a unique position of trust, as often those placed in their care have particular vulnerabilities,” he said.
“However, the defendant began abusing his foster daughter when she turned 16, and he continued to do so over a year.
“It was effectively conducted on an almost daily basis until she reported the matters to the police a year later.”
The victim explained the impact of the abuse.
“He destroyed my childhood, my teenage years and my early womanhood,” she stated.
“After the abuse he would cuddle me and tell me how much he loved me. I now fear those words when somebody tries to get close to me.”
Joe Maloney, defending, said: “When he was arrested in October 2020, he made significant admissions and is now facing the consequences of his actions.
“He has shown genuine remorse over the past two years. However, he was not charged with the offences until May of this year.
“He has split up with his wife and has been disowned by other family members.
“He submitted his guilty pleas as he realised he had overstepped the boundaries, which has avoided the need for a trial. He has not tried to minimise the situation by any means and is embarrassed by his actions.”
Speaking after the hearing, investigating officer DC Jade Griffiths of Gloucestershire police said: “The victim in this case saw the man as a father figure, a person trusted to look after her while she was in care.
“Instead, the person who was meant to protect her abused her for a prolonged period of time, and it has taken extreme courage to speak out about his abhorrent actions.
“I would like to commend her for not only coming forward to report the sexual abuse she had been subjected to, but continuing to work with us throughout what was a lengthy investigation due to the complexities and scale of offending.
“We do not underestimate how difficult it must be for victims to contact police about abuse when the person responsible is either in a position of trust or embroiled with professionals. Please know that we are here and we will listen.”