A MAN has been sent to prison for committing sex offences against three young girls.

Christopher Bancroft, 60, formerly of Elmstead Road, Bexhill, but now of Willowbrook Drive, Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire, was sentenced to one year and ten months when he appeared at Hove Crown Court on July 30.

The former Bexhill resident has been given the prison sentence for committing a series of sex offences against three girls in the town 30 years ago.

Bancroft will also be a registered sex offender for the next ten years.

He had been found guilty of eight counts of indecent assault between 1990 and 1992 against the three victims.

Four counts were against one of the victims and two against both of the other girls.

He was found not guilty of one count of indecent assault.

He was given a sentence totalling two years which was reduced by 43 days to take account of time spent on a tag checking his movements whilst on remand prior to his trial and conviction.

Detective constable Nicola Westgate from the East Sussex Safeguarding Investigation Unit said: "Bancroft came to know the girls when he was living in Bexhill and systematically abused them over many months.

"The abuse only stopped when the defendant began a relationship with someone closer to his own age.

"The victims have carried this abuse with them for many years, but eventually, one of the girls felt strong enough to speak out, and we immediately began enquiries.

"The impact that it has had on all of them has been huge.

"They all gave evidence at court, and two of them attended the sentencing to read out their victim personal statements in front of the defendant as they wanted him to hear the devastating effect that his actions have had on their lives.

"All three victims were extremely brave and very dignified throughout the process.

"I am very grateful for their help and that of the other witnesses throughout the investigation.

"We will always investigate such offences and support victims with access to specialist support and advice."

See the Sussex Police website for further information on reporting sexual offences and on the support available https://www.sussex.police.uk/police-forces/sussex-police/areas/campaigns/campaigns/rape-and-sexual-offences/.

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