18 Dec 2013

Lostprophets’ Ian Watkins jailed for child sex offences

Former Lostprophets singer Ian Watkins is jailed for 35 years for a string of child sex offences and is described as a “highly dangerous and manipulative individual who preyed on his victims”.

Watkins confessed to 13 offences at Cardiff crown court, including two counts of attempting to rape a baby.

Disturbing details of the crimes were revealed during the trial.

After sexually touching a groupie’s 11-month-old baby, Watkins then tried to have penetrative sex with the child. He also encouraged a second fan to abuse her child during a webcam chat and made child abuse videos.

Trial judge Mr Justice Royce told him and his co-defendants that what they had done “plumbed new depths of depravity”.

Away from the highlights of your public performances lay a dark and sinister side Mr Justice Royce

He added: “Those who have appeared in these courts over many years see a large number of horrific cases. This case, however, breaks new ground.

“You had many fawning fans. That gave you power. You knew you could use that power to induce young female fans to help satisfy your insatiable lust and take part in the sexual abuse of their own children.

“Away from the highlights of your public performances lay a dark and sinister side.”

Watkins’ ex-girlfriend told Channel 4 News on Tuesday she had tried to report him to the police, but was ignored. Police are investigating whether the 36-year-old singer committed further abuse in the US and Germany.

‘Committed, organised paedophile’

The senior policeman heading the continuing hunt for the singer’s victims, and those who helped him, described Watkins as a “committed, organised paedophile”.

Ian Watkins was able to manipulate female fans to collude in the abuse of their own children. Since his arrest in October last year, he has shown no remorse or commented during a single police interview.

Detective Chief Inspector Peter Doyle said: “My view of him as an individual is that he has shown no empathy, no sympathy or any remorse for what he has done.

“It’s as if he just doesn’t care. He has shown no remorse at any time. In my view, that potentially makes him the most dangerous sex offender I have ever seen.

“Offending against children does not get any worse. We are not talking about children of any age here, we are talking about babies. I don’t know what he is not capable of.”

After the hearing, Suzanne Thomas, senior crown prosecutor at CPS Wales, said: “These three defendants conspired to commit appalling crimes of abuse against young and defenceless victims.

‘Highly dangerous and manipulative’

“The prosecution case was that Ian Watkins was the ringleader of this terrible conspiracy and it is right that his sentence reflects this.

“He is a highly dangerous and manipulative individual who preyed on his victims in a calculated manner.

“The other two defendants were active participants in the most shocking abuse of their own children. They too have received sentences that reflect their admissions of guilt for these offences.”