October 2016

Man jailed after he groomed and raped schoolgirl when he was a child

Pervert Craig Braham has been jailed after he was convicted of grooming a child and raping her when he was 13.

The 23-year-old was found guilty by a jury of sexually abusing his victim, who was much younger than him, ten years ago.

The jury was told the defendant would get the girl on her own before committing the offences.

Now Braham has been jailed for six years at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court.

Prosecutor Sally Hancox said: “The victim was a child and was particularly vulnerable because of her extreme youth. There was grooming and deliberate isolation of the victim so the offences could take place.”

In a statement read to the court, the victim said: “Even though he has hurt me I will not let him ruin my life. This has turned my family upside down and caused my dad heartache. He still sees me as his little girl. When I first disclosed I started to feel I was to blame and believed it was my fault. I wanted to hurt myself with anything sharp.

“When taking my GCSEs I always had this on the back of my mind. This resulted in me not doing as well as I could have done. He made me feel used and no worth to anyone. What he did to me was unforgivable. He took my childhood from me.”

Braham, of Dayson Place, Bradwell, denied rape, assault by penetration, and inciting sexual behaviour but was convicted of all three offences after a trial last month.

The court heard since committing these offences the defendant has been convicted of sending offensive messages – pictures of his private parts – and exposure.

Anis Ali, mitigating, said the defendant, a dad, continues to deny the offences.

Mr Ali said: “He recognises the very real and difficult situation he finds himself in by reason of the evidence put before the jury. The offences are historic. It is recognised he has changed his attitude.”

Jailing Braham, Judge David Fletcher said: “These offences were disturbing and were offences which you committed when you were all but a child yourself.

“You took the opportunity when it presented itself to sexually assault her. You also took advantage by persuading her to behave in a sexual manner towards you.”

The judge said it was not necessary to treat Braham as a dangerous offender.

But he was placed on the sex offenders’ register for the rest of his life.