Paedophile from Wisbech who raped ‘defenceless’ five-year-old girl in Yeovil is jailed for 16 years NSPCC says horrific abuse case will send shockwaves through the local community

Paedophile Robert Skerman has been jailed five child sex offences including raping a girl under 13.
Paedophile Robert Skerman has been jailed five child sex offences including raping a girl under 13.

A man who raped a defenceless five-year-old girl and instructed her to carry out vile sex acts on him has been sent to prison for 16 years.

A jury at Taunton Crown Court heard shocking video evidence from his victim’s original police interview which was screened in court.

She described how Robert Skerman, 38, of Redway Drive, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, encouraged her to touch him and told her to do “naughty things”.

He was found guilty yesterday (Thursday) of one count of raping a girl under the age of 13, two counts causing a girl under 13 to engage in sexual activity, and two counts of sexual assault on a child under the age of 13.

The horrific crimes took place in Yeovil.

Skerman had admitted a further three counts of possessing child pornography, after police confiscated a laptop and USB drive from his house after he was arrested.

As the trial opened on Monday, prosecutor Jenny Talentine told the court: “On both devices were indecent images of children...in short, child pornography.

“The defendant has pleaded guilty to having these images, and so the jury will not have to see them. He had a clear sexual interest in children.”

He was sentenced to 16 years in jail, with a further four years’ suspended sentence, and was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register for life.

An NSPCC spokesman for South West England said: “This was an horrendous incident, in which Skerman carried out a shocking sexual attack on a young girl purely for his own sexual gratification.

“The impact of this horrific abuse on his defenceless victim, as well as her family, has clearly been enormous, so it is crucial that they continue to receive the right support to recover from this awful episode.

“The NSPCC would urge any adult with concerns arising from the details of this case to contact the NSPCC for help and advice at any time on 0808 800 5000.”