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Two men have been found guilty of a string of sexual offences

Two men have been found guilty of committing a string of sexual offences against young women in Rugby, Coventry, and Leicestershire.

Peter Jones Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window
Peter Jones
Raymond Dickens Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window
Raymond Dickens
Helen Thompson Displays a larger version of this image in a new browser window
Helen Thompson
Following a trial, Peter Livingston Jones, 55, of Wheelwright Lane, Coventry, was convicted of 11 offences against five victims spanning the past 24 years.

Raymond Dickens, 53, of Langdale Close, Rugby, was convicted of eight offences against three victims in the 1990s.

A woman standing trial with them, Helen Thompson, 43, of Morris Close, Rugby, was found guilty of kidnap.

Detectives from the Warwickshire Police Major Investigation Unit launched Operation Costa after two victims made allegations against Jones and Dickens.

Following media coverage of the investigation, more victims came forward.

One of the victims first met Jones when she was a teenager. Jones would give her money and buy her cigarettes.

One night in 1998, Jones accused her of stealing from him. He told her she would have to pay for it by working. He then assaulted her and forced her into a vehicle. The vehicle, being driven by Thompson, went to a flat in Rugby where Jones raped the woman telling her that it was payment for her debt.

The same woman was indecently assaulted by Dickens after meeting him in a nightclub in Loughborough in the late 90s.

Jones and Dickens denied all the charges saying sexual activity related to the rape allegations was consensual.

Following six days of deliberation the jury found Jones guilty of three counts of rape, one count of kidnap, two counts of false imprisonment, one count of administering drugs to obtain or facilitate intercourse, two counts of causing or inciting prostitution for gain, one count of sexual assault, and one count of causing actual bodily harm.

They found Dickens guilty of four counts of indecent assault, two counts of rape, one count of procuring a woman to become a prostitute, and one count of false imprisonment.

Jones and Dickens will be sentenced on Friday (8 June).

Thompson will be sentenced at a later date.

Following the verdict, Detective Inspector Paul Thompson said: "I would like to pay tribute to the victims in this case; their bravery and courage in giving evidence in such difficult circumstances has ensured the conviction of two extremely dangerous men.

"Over a number of years, Jones and Dickens have taken advantage of vulnerable young women for their own sexual gratification and financial gain. Jones' offending continued up until his arrest last year.

"They preyed on vulnerable women. To start with they flattered them and brought them gifts but this attention soon turned to sexual and physical violence, manipulation and intimidation. All this was intended as a way to control them and force them into prostitution. It is a familiar pattern in these types of investigations.

"I hope that the bravery of the women in this case and the conviction of these dangerous sexual predators will give confidence to other victims of sexual offences to come forward. We will investigate and do everything we can to support vulnerable victims and bring offenders to justice.

"Jones' and Dickens' treatment of their victims was typical of the types of people who groom and exploit women and I would urge people to look out for the signs. If you are concerned that anyone is being exploited and abused please contact police on 101.

"I would also like to thank our partner agencies for their assistance throughout this investigation, their support has been invaluable. Partnership working has been key to this investigation."

If you have been a victim of a sexual offence or know someone who has been a victim, help and advice is available. If you or someone else is in immediate danger call 999, alternatively you can make a report by calling 101 or going your nearest police station.

If you do not feel comfortable speaking to officers, you can contact a referral centre which specialises in helping victims of rape and sexual assault - including providing medical care and counselling.

In Warwickshire you can contact the Blue Sky Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC). For more information go to www.blueskycentre.org.uk, call 02476 865 505 or e-mail geh-tr.theblueskycentre@nhs.net

 

Posted by Sam Cook, Communications Officer

Published 06/06/18