Highlands & Islands

Inverness rapist Andrew Peters given life sentence

A man convicted of raping two women in Inverness has been given a life sentence.

Andrew Peters, 34, was found guilty by a jury in 2013 of attacking the women who were 48 and 27.

During the trial, the 48-year-old woman told how she smeared her blood behind a bed head in an effort to leave evidence of the rape.

Peters was told he must serve at least seven and a half years before being eligible to apply for parole.

He will be held at the high security State Hospital at Carstairs because of a mental disorder.

If his condition improves he can be transferred to a mainstream prison.

'Permanent disfigurement'

Peters, who appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh for sentencing, will be made the subject of an Order for Lifelong Restriction (OLR).

Under an OLR a prisoner will only be released by the parole authorities when it is considered that holding him in custody is no longer necessary for the protection of the public.

If freed he is kept under supervision.

Judge Lord Uist ordered that Peters must serve seven and a half years in prison before he becomes eligible to apply for parole, but warned him that he must not assume he will automatically be released.

Peters was found guilty in July 2013 of raping the women on March 9 in 2011 and November 4 in 2012, leaving the latter victim seriously injured.

Lord Uist said Peters' 48-year-old victim had suffered "severe injury, permanent disfigurement and permanent impairment".

'Horrific ordeals'

The judge said he was sure that anyone who had listened to the woman's account during the trial would ever forget it.

Speaking after the sentencing Andy Shanks, procurator fiscal for the High Court in the north of Scotland, praised the women's bravery in coming forward to report the rapes.

He said: "The actions of Andrew Peters have devastated the lives of two women but it is thanks to these women, who were brave enough to report their horrific ordeals, that we have been able to bring him to justice.

"Victims can have confidence that their cases will be handled by specialists, who are committed wherever possible to bringing those who commit sexual offences of any kind to justice."

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