Sex attacker's wife to stand by him

DISGRACED osteopath Owen Bull's wife is today pledging to stand by him after he was jailed for seven-and-a-half years for a series of sex assaults.The attacks were carried out on female patients in Ipswich, including an undercover policewoman.

DISGRACED osteopath Owen Bull's wife is today pledging to stand by him after he was jailed for seven-and-a-half years for a series of sex assaults.

The attacks were carried out on female patients in Ipswich, including an undercover policewoman.

Jill Bull, who has been married to the 49-year-old osteopath, for almost 20 years, said she had no doubt her husband was innocent and described him as a “wonderful man”.

As reported in later editions of yesterday's Evening Star and on the paper's website, Bull, formerly of Woodbridge Road East, Ipswich, was sentenced at Norwich Crown Court for attempted rape, two indecent assaults and a sexual assault.

The charges related to four female patients over a three-year period.

Bull, who had denied all the charges against him, was cleared of two further offences of sexual assault and a charge of indecent assault at the end of his trial last month.

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Judge Paul Downes jailed Bull for six years for the attempted rape, and a further 18 months for each of the other offences to run concurrently.

He also ordered him to sign the Sex Offenders Register indefinitely and made him the subject of a sexual prevention offences order, which bans him from engaging in any therapeutic work, whether paid or unpaid, involving any contact with female patients.

Bull is also banned from having any unsupervised contact with female patients.

Speaking after her husband's sentencing, Mrs Bull said: “My husband, Owen, is a wonderful man. I have great respect for him and I am very proud of the dignified way in which he has conducted himself during the last two terrible years since the allegations were first made.

“I have seen all the evidence and I have read all of the statements of the complainants - I have no doubt whatsoever that my husband is innocent.”

George Heimler, representing Bull, told the court yesterday there had been no violence or intimidation linked to the offences.

“He has brought relief from pain and suffering to numerous patients over many years, many of whom still acknowledge the assistance he provided and speak highly of him,” he said.

“He succumbed to a sexual temptation for reasons unknown and in the process brought his own downfall.”

Sentencing Bull, Judge Downes said the offences were more serious because Bull had been in a position of trust.

“Each of the ladies involved obviously was in a vulnerable position. They were literally in your hands. They trusted you as a reputable therapist,” he said.

“What you did was to take advantage of their vulnerable position.”

Bull, who was dressed in a navy suit, blue shirt and blue tie, looked down throughout the proceedings and showed no emotion as he was led down to the cells.

Outside the courtroom, Mrs Bull was hugged by former patients of her husband who believe in his innocence and turned up to offer their support.

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