Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Portsmouth paedophile ring trial: jury retires

The jury in the trial of five people accused of being members of a paedophile ring has retired to consider its verdict.

The defendants, including a woman and a serving soldier, are accused of a range of child sex offences.

The jury at Portsmouth Crown Court heard a paedophile ring raped and abused two children under 13-years-old.

Robert Hathaway, 36, of Tyseley Road, Portsmouth, has pleaded guilty to 26 sexual crimes against children.

These include rape and 17 counts of possessing indecent images of children.

His partner Melissa Noon, 29, denies 12 charges including sexual assault and possessing indecent photos.

Also standing trial are Simon Hilton, 29, of Wolsey Road, London, who denies three charges of arranging a child sex offence and Daniel Bell, 27, a soldier, formerly of Emsworth, Hampshire, who denies two charges of arranging a child sex offence.

John Maddox, 46, of Rainham, Essex, denies causing a child to engage in sexual activity and Mark Day, 45, of Whitefriars Meadow, Sandwich, Kent, denies two charges of arranging a child sex offence.

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