Violent man jailed after two decades of “horrifying” abuse

A VIOLENT and controlling man who subjected a woman to two decades of “truly horrifying” prolonged abuse has been jailed for five years.

Paul Flanaghan (63) was jailed yesterday after a court heard he viewed his victim as a “thing” and would control aspects of her everyday life, including her finances, who she had contact with and what she wore.

Flanaghan, of Wingfield Road, Rotherham, was arrested in July 2018 after officers were called to an address in Conisbrough to reports of a concern for welfare. 

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When they arrived, the woman was found with significant injuries to her face and body, including a fractured foot.

In a statement, the victim said: “This man saw me as a ‘thing’. He never cared for me, he cared for my money and the power he had over me and even to this day, he cannot admit what he has done.

“He made me attend court and relive the experiences I suffered which put stress and worry on me.

“I am happy with my life now. I am back in touch with my family, I have friends and I live in beautiful home.

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“I am content with my life and I never want to speak or think about him again. 

“Thank you to my friends and family who have supported me and also thank you the police, they never let me down and always supported me.

"Without them, I would not be the confident person I am today.”

Det Sgt Kath Coulter said: “This is a truly horrifying case of prolonged abuse and one of the very worst I have encountered in my career.

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“Flanaghan thought it was acceptable to control all aspects of his victim’s life through violence and inciting fear. 

“I can’t begin to imagine what his victim went through — both mentally and physically.

“I would like to thank her for her courage and support throughout this investigation and subsequent trial.”

Flanaghan was found guilty of assault and coercive and controlling behaviour on October 28, 2022, following a five-day trial at Sheffield Crown Court.

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