July 2018

Child rapist jailed for 20 years over ‘appalling sexual abuse’

A depraved child rapist who went on the run from the law has been jailed for 20 years.

Stephen Beal, 55, raped a 10-year-old when he was 16, London’s Appeal Court heard.

And he committed a string of other sex offences, including rapes against two other victims, when he was older.

Beal, of Claremont Road, Seaford, fled after being released on bail pending his trial at Lewes Crown Court.

But he was caught hiding out in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, in December last year and brought back south to face justice.

After pleading guilty to three rapes, two indecent assaults and one sexual assault, he was locked up for 20 years in February.

He was also ordered to serve an extra six years on licence following his release.

Today at London’s Criminal Appeal Court, Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb made a technical adjustment to his sentence.

But her decision made no difference to the length of his jail time or the extended licence period.

The judge slammed the “appalling catalogue of sexual abuse” that three victims suffered at Beal’s hands.

“He has been given many opportunities to address his personality and other issues but has not taken up the opportunity,” she added.

The sentence was adjusted so as to attach the extended licence to one of the individual, consecutive, sentences he received for his sex crimes.