Two men 'at the heart' of prostitution business in Rugby jailed for total of 38 years

Peter Jones.
Peter Jones.

Two men who were at the heart of a prostitution business in Rugby in the 1990s have been jailed for a total of 38 years.

The jury at Warwick Crown Court heard how Peter Livingston Jones, 55, of Wheelwright Lane, Coventry, and Raymond Dickens, 53, of Langdale Close, Rugby, groomed and exploited young women for their own financial gain and sexual gratification.

Raymond Dickens.

Raymond Dickens.

Some of their victims were girls when they started to groom them.

Jones was convicted of 11 offences against five victims spanning the past 24 years.

He was found 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.

Dickens was convicted of eight offences against three victims in the 1990s.

He was found 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 was sentenced to 22 years in prison with a further eight years to be served on licence.

Dickens was sentenced to 16 years in prison.

They were both ordered to sign the sex offenders' register for life.

Following the sentencing, detective inspector Paul Thomson from the Warwickshire Police Major Investigation Unit said: "The offending in this case was typical of the types of people who exploit young woman and girls.

"Jones and Dickens identified their victims as being vulnerable; initially they showed them a kindness they were probably not used to. Gradually, through the use of drugs, sex, and violence they gained control over them and sold them to other men for sex. They would keep the money they made.

"In Jones' case, the judge described his actions as 'a campaign of rape' aimed at controlling his victims. He continued to profit from prostitution up until his arrest.

"Jones and Dickens may have thought they had got away with their behaviour; however, today their sordid and violent past has caught up with them.

"These women suffered unimaginable suffering that continues to affect their lives. However, their bravery in coming forward and giving evidence ensured two extremely dangerous men got long prison sentences.

"I hope their bravery and the length of the sentences will give other victims of sexual offences the confidence to come forward. We will investigate and do everything we can to support vulnerable victims and bring offenders to justice.

"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."

In sentencing Jones and Dickens, Judge Sylvia de Bertodano said: "Nothing you can do now or I can do today can take away the pain and suffering or give these women back their youth.

"Thanks to the verdict, their suffering has been acknowledged. I hope some form of closure can be offered by that and the very long sentences you are going to be given."

Following the sentencing, Judge Sylvia de Bertodano paid tribute to the investigation team for the thoroughness of their investigation and recommended them for commendation.

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

Helen Thompson, 43, of Morris Close, Rugby, was found guilty of kidnap as part of the same trial. She will be sentenced at a later date.