A DARWEN man has been jailed for five years for indecently assaulting a young girl.
Preston Crown Court heard Allen Dearden plead guilty to five historic charges of assaulting the schoolgirl while she was under the age of 14.
The prosecution said all the offences were committed between September 1981 and January 1983.
The 67-year-old, of Newton Street, Darwen, subjected his victim to oral rapes, touching and attempted rapes.
Police said the victim had kept the abuse quiet because she felt that if she disclosed the matter her life would have been ripped apart.
Eventually last year, the victim said she felt like she had to do the right thing, after telling officers ‘her life had been ruined’ by the years of abuse.
Judge Robert Altham sentenced Dearden to five years in prison.
He was also disqualified from working with children for life, ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for life and was made the subject of an indeterminate sexual offences protection order forcing him to inform police of his whereabouts on release from prison.
DI Claire Holbrook, who led the investigation, said: “This was a fantastic result for the victim who has spent the last 30 years trying to manage the psychological effect this has had on her.
“A good proportion of the work my team focuses on are historic alleg-ations. Whilst I am aware that some victims find the courage to come forward immediately, others find it more difficult for a multitude of reasons.
“These victims can be reassured that we have a high conviction rate and that they will be supported throughout.
“The passing of time does not in anyway decrease the horrendous acts or effects that sex offenders cause. Those victims who do come forward can take pride in preventing any other child being assaulted by the same abuser.”