Birmingham & Black Country

Nine jailed over abuse in Birmingham of boy in care

Stephen Kelly
Image caption Stephen Kelly found the boy begging in Birmingham city centre and prostituted him to others

Nine men have been jailed after a teenager in local authority care was subjected to "horrifying" sexual abuse.

The boy was "sold like goods" in Birmingham's red light area during 2009 and 2010, Warwick Crown Court was told.

A three-month trial heard the teenager was stripped, beaten with a stick, and raped by two of the defendants, with some abuse streamed on the internet.

Judge Sylvia de Bertadano said he was let down by police who did not investigate his initial complaints.

Image copyright West Midlands Police
Image caption Ten men were sentenced in all. Top row (l to r) Stephen Kelly, Peter Joynes, Ronald Potter, Ian Prestleton, Kevin Tudor. Bottom row (l to r) Tahir Hussain, Alan Priest, Ashley Sherrington, Michael Godbold, Robert Bailey.

The trial in February heard the victim, now aged in his early 20s, had absconded from a care home when he was 14 years old.

Stephen Kelly, 39, of Elm Road, Bournville, Birmingham, found him begging in Birmingham city centre and prostituted him to others in cars, vans and hotels, the jury was told.

He was raped by Alan Priest, 63, of Mucklow Hill, Halesowen and the convicted sex offender's former male partner, 25-year-old Ashley Sherrington.

The boy first went to West Midlands Police in 2009 and 2010, but showed "incredible courage" by making a further complaint in 2012, Judge de Bertadano said.

Passing sentence on the boy's abusers, she told the defendants: "Each of you in your own way exploited this vulnerable boy.

"Therefore you are each partly responsible for his situation as a young man who is struggling to get his life back together and finds himself unable to escape from the legacy you have left him."

The youngster was described in court as having a troubled family background.

Assistant Chief Constable Carl Foulkes described the crimes as "horrific" adding: "As a force we have learned from the original investigation, the review and lots of other elements of this case."

Image caption (From left to right) Ian Prestleton, Michael Godbold and Peter Joynes were all found guilty of sexual activity with the teenager

The inquiry led to the identification of another victim who was indecently assaulted by former Special Constable Ronald Potter about 15 years ago.

Potter, 79, from Tippers Hill Lane, Fillongley, near Coventry, was jailed for three years.

The defendants and their sentences

  • Alan Priest, 63, of Mucklow Hill, Halesowen, jailed for life with a minimum term of seven years after being convicted of two rapes and one count of sexual activity with a child
  • Ashley Sherrington, 25, of Dawlish Drive, Stoke-on-Trent, imprisoned for nine years for two counts of rape
  • Robert Bailey, 27, of Watt Road, Erdington, Birmingham, handed a seven-year sentence after being found guilty of arranging or facilitating child prostitution, engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, sexual activity with a child, and making indecent photographs
  • Michael Godbold, 57, of Uxbridge Rd, Shepherd's Bush, London, jailed for 11 years for sexual activity with a child, engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, arranging or facilitating child prostitution, and possession of controlled drugs
  • Tahir Hussain, 34, of St Josephs Road, Ward End, Birmingham, jailed for seven years after being found guilty of two counts of sexual activity with a child
  • Peter Joynes, 59, of Canberra Way, Highgate, Birmingham, jailed for four years for arranging or facilitating child prostitution and sexual activity with a child
  • Stephen Kelly, 40, of Elm Road, Bournville, Birmingham, jailed for eight years after being found guilty of two counts of arranging or facilitating child prostitution and one of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child
  • Ian Prestleton, 54, of High Haden Road, Cradley Heath, jailed for three years after being convicted of sexual activity with a child
  • Kevin Tudor, 55, of no fixed address, admitted two counts of sexual activity with a child and facilitating prostitution before the trial. He was jailed for nine years and handed an extended eight-year licence period, which will start after his initial sentence has been served
Image caption (From left to right) Ian Prestleton, Michael Godbold and Peter Joynes were all found guilty of sexual activity with the teenager

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