Beds, Herts & Bucks

Hertfordshire man jailed for raping girl in Goa

Barry McCloud
Image caption Barry McCloud plied the girl with spiked drinks to carry out the attacks

A Hertfordshire man who travelled to India to film himself raping a 10-year-old girl has been sentenced to life in prison.

Barry McCloud, 54, of Tudor Walk, Watford, groomed his victim after befriending her "slum-dwelling" family, St Albans Crown Court heard.

He admitted three rapes and 18 related charges in Goa between 2005 and 2007.

Judge Marie Catterson said McCloud's crimes were "abhorrent". She said he must serve at least seven years.

The court heard the girl had felt unable to report what was happening because McCloud paid for her brother's education.

McCloud and his wife had met the victim's brother while he was selling peanuts at a beach resort in the 1990s.

The child's father was dead and the mother had raised nine children by selling pots and pans.

Drugged mango juice

McCloud's activities came to light in 2007 when police in the UK suspected him of downloading images of child abuse and seized his computer.

Officers found images of the rapes as well as video clips McCloud had taken on a camcorder as he raped and abused the girl, described in court as a "slum dweller".

McCloud continued to visit Goa after splitting up with his wife in 2005, and would tell the girl's brother to bring his sister to his accommodation.

The court heard McCloud gave her mango juiced laced with temazepam, which would leave her unconscious.

Judge Catterson said: "It's clear the victim felt unable to complain about you because of the financial support you were giving her brother."

'Extremely rare'

McCloud also admitted four counts of assault, three of administering a noxious substance so he could engage in sexual activity, and one of sexual assault of a child.

He pleaded guilty to eight charges of taking indecent photographs of the child and two charges relating to the making and possessing of indecent photographs of children.

Christine Beddoe, director of ECPAT UK, a child rights charity which supported the police investigation, said: "Unfortunately the UK has an appalling record in prosecuting British citizens for child sexual abuse overseas and successful cases like this are extremely rare.

"ECPAT UK is calling on the government to introduce a cross-government strategy to deal effectively with sex offenders who abuse children overseas to better protect children in the UK and abroad."

Tamsyn Wilcox, CPS district crown prosecutor, said: "Barry McCloud abused the trust of a family living in extreme poverty in Goa and used his position of trust to gain access to the victim in this case.

"This outcome sends a strong message to those people who think they can sexually abuse children whilst travelling abroad, without facing prosecution."

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