October 2017

Dangerous, predatory rapist who attacked three vulnerable underage girls has been jailed for 12 years

A dangerous, predatory rapist who attacked three vulnerable underage girls has been jailed for 12 years.

Preston Crown Court heard how 19-year-old Joshua Stanley talked to his victims, who cannot be named for legal reasons, on social media before raping one of them twice and engaging in sexual activity with the other two.

Following a two-week trial Stanley, formerly of Clegg Street, Haslingden, was convicted of two counts of rape, one of sexual activity with a child under 16 and sexual activity with a girl under 13.

Judge Graham Knowles QC deemed Stanley to be a dangerous offender and sentenced him to 12 years in a young offenders’ institution, with a further four years on extended licence.

He will not be considered for parole until he has served at least eight years behind bars.

The court heard how Stanley met the first victim, a 14-year-old Rossendale girl, in February last year through a mutual friend and they then started chatting on Facebook.

During the half-term holidays, they attended a party at a friend’s house and he engaged in sexual activity with the victim who was under the influence of alcohol at the time.

The court heard the second girl was just 12 years old when she met Stanley on Facebook.

They chatted between the end of February and the beginning of April 2016, which resulted in Stanley visiting her at her home address in Rossendale where he engaged in sexual activity with her.

Towards the end of July 2016, Stanley had started talking to his third victim, a 14-year-old-girl, via Facebook.

They arranged to meet in August 2016 in Great Harwood, the court heard.

The court heard Stanley raped the girl in a secluded wooded area.

He also raped her at her home. Stanley was ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for life and was made subject of an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.