Campaign of abuse lands paedophile with 12 year jail sentence

Campaign of abuse lands paedophile with 12 year jail sentence

By Michael Upton | 12/05/2022

Campaign of abuse lands paedophile with 12 year jail sentence


A PAEDOPHILE who raped one child and sexually abused another after bribing them into performing sexual acts in return for time on his Playstation has been jailed for 12-and-a-half years.

Mark Butterworth (28), formerly of Lilac Crescent, Hoyland, carried out a “campaign of abuse” against his two victims, who were aged between nine and 12 at the time.

Sheffield Crown Court heard the second victim could have been saved from abuse but a relative they turned to after Butterworth showed them an indecent image of a child had deleted the photo and covered up the child rapist’s criminality.

The first victim said in a statement read to the court that they had believed they were the only victim and to discover Butterworth had abused another child had been “devastating”.

They said they felt guilty about not having spoken about the abuse and having been able to prevent the second victim “going through the same thing”, adding that it was “my cross to bear” despite family members’ reassurances.

“The impact this has had on my family cannot be imagined or explained,” they added.

The second victim’s mother said they had self-harmed because of their ordeal.

Butterworth was convicted after a seven-day trial in February and appeared before the court last Friday for sentencing for 19 offences.

Judge Rachael Harrison said while she accepted Butterworth had a low IQ and suffered from depression and anxiety, she rejected any suggestion he had a learning disability.

The judge said the “lead” offence in relation to the first victim was one of three counts of rape, for which Butterworth was jailed for ten years.

He was handed concurrent sentences for two counts of causing a child to watch a sexual act; two counts of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child; and of two counts of inciting a child to engage in sexual activity; three offences of causing a child to engage in sexual activity and one of sexual assault.

The court heard the abuse of the second victim had started with Butterworth showing the victim “an indecent image”.

The judge said: “(The victim) took it to their grandmother, who deleted it and lied about it to (the victim’s) mother, which allowed (Butterworth) to continue offending.”

Judge Harrison said the lead offence in relation to this victim was one of two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity, for which Butterworth was given a consecutive sentence of two-and-a-half years.

He was also given concurrent sentences for a second count of the same offence, plus two offences of causing a child to watch a sexual act, one of possession of an indecent image and one of making an indecent image.

Butterworth was also made subject to a sexual harm prevention order and ordered to sign on the Sex Offenders’ Register.

South Yorkshire Police said they did not have a custody photo of Butterworth.