Rapist given four year jail term

A SAXMUNDHAM man has been sentenced to four years in prison for raping a woman.Clifford Harding, 39, of Mayflower Avenue, pleaded guilty to committing the rape, on July 18.

A SAXMUNDHAM man has been sentenced to four years in prison for raping a woman.

Clifford Harding, 39, of Mayflower Avenue, pleaded guilty to committing the rape, on July 18.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that Harding, who knew his victim, had climbed over her fence to get to the back of her house.

The victim let Harding in, but was then set upon by him. Harding was said to have covered his victim's mouth while he carried out the act.

Police were called and later arrested Harding, who suffers from alcohol problems and depression. The victim had suffered internal injuries resulting from the attack, which could not be explained by Harding.

In a tearful admission to his solicitor, he admitted carrying out the rape.

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In a written statement, the father-of-two said: "What she is saying is right. I know I shouldn't have done it. I raped her."

Judge Devaux said the offence was aggravated by the fact that he had put his hands over his victim's mouth.

"This would have been likely to have caused her great distress," he said.