AN 85-year-old man has been jailed for raping a ten year old girl more than 40 years ago.

Eric Jones, from Hailsham, was sentenced to ten years imprisonment at Lewes Crown Court on Monday last week.

Despite denying the act, he was found found guilty by a jury on December 11 last year.

Jones was convicted of one count of rape against the then ten-year-old girl.

He knew her during the period between 1972 and 1975 while he was living in Crawley.

Sussex Police said Jones will be a registered sex offender for life.

Detective Constable Rees Hopcraft said: “The victim came and spoke to us in 2017 and explained how Jones had preyed on her when she was a vulnerable child.

“I would like to praise the bravery of the victim who has, after all these years, come forward to report the offences.

“She had to re-live the traumatic experience by providing evidence and sitting through the court process following Jones’s not guilty plea.

“The victim’s willingness to aid our investigation helped ensure that justice was done.

“Jones showed little remorse for his behaviour.

“The seriousness of this has been reflected in his sentence.

“If you have been the victim of such offences or know of someone who has, you can contact us at any time online or by calling 101 and arrange to talk in confidence to experienced investigators.”