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Man found guilty following historic sexual abuse of a child over 20 years ago

A man who subjected a young girl to a series of sexual abuse more than 20 years ago has been found guilty of the offences.

Mark Anthony Foster, (who is also known as Tony), of Forster Avenue, Weaverham, was found guilty of 11 counts of indecent assault on a girl under 14, four counts of rape of a girl under 16, four counts of gross indecency with a girl under 14 and one count of rape of a girl over 16, on Friday 12 April following a 13-day trial at Chester Crown Court.

The 61-year-old has been remanded in custody until a sentencing hearing at the same court on Thursday 13 June 2024.

A jury heard Foster committed a number of indecent assaults and rapes on a girl between 1995 and 2001, when the victim was aged between nine and sixteen.

The case came to the attention of Cheshire Police in August 2020 when the victim bravely came forward to disclose what had happened to her.

She reported the offences took place in the Northwich area by Foster, and as time progressed, the offending became more aggressive and violent. Over a period of seven years, Foster groomed the victim, subjecting her to multiple indecent assaults and rapes.

In interviews following his arrest, Foster continued to deny the allegations, but was subsequently charged in January 2023.

Following his conviction, DC Paul Beesley said:

“Firstly, I would like to commend the bravery of the victim in this case, who not only came forward to report what had happened to her, but also endured the process of a trial after Foster refused to take accountability for his horrifying actions.

“The offences that the victim reported were some of the most horrific and violent, and clearly demonstrate the grooming she sustained.

“The offences were persistent sexualised abuse that Foster subjected her to over a seven-year period, which became more violent as time progressed, including administering the victim with medication before raping her.

“But thanks to the strength of the evidence against him, Foster has been found guilty of a number of offences.

“As this case shows, we treat all reports of non-recent sexual offences seriously, with the wishes and needs of the victim as our main priority, and any allegations will be thoroughly investigated.

"Anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse – no matter how long ago the incident took place – is urged to come forward and report it to Cheshire Police on 101 or through our website.

Pictured - Mark Anthony Foster, (who is also known as Tony), of Forster Avenue in Weaverham.

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