Doncaster man jailed for 11 ½ years for string of sexual offences against four women

Date published: 09 February 2019 10:17
Dated: 09 February 2019 10:16:23
A 53 year old man has been jailed for 11 and a half years for the rape and sexual assault following a four week trial at Sheffield Crown Court. He was found guilty of three counts of sexual assault, once count of rape, one count of indecent assault and one count of exposure.

Paul Piddington was a prolific predator who worked across the country as a polo coach and committed offences over a 14-year period, from 2001 to 2015.

South Yorkshire Police began an investigation in July 2016 when one of his victims came forward and reported a rape against him. Enquiries revealed that he had previously been reported for a sexual matter, but no charges were brought due to insufficient evidence. The case was revisited in light of the second allegation.
Witnesses provided details of further potential victims who in turn disclosed additional offences. Finally, a media release led to more witnesses coming forward.

Detective Chief Inspector Joanne Bates said: “Piddington prayed on vulnerable women who knew that their voice would not be heard if they spoke out against such a popular and well liked member of the polo community.

“He has now been held accountable for his despicable actions, and this has only been made possible by the bravery of the women who have suffered for many years having been abused by Piddington.”

Sentencing Judge David Dixon said: “you are highly proficient in the area of expertise you have, that being breaking, making horses of various different types. But it would also seem a good polo coach.  “But it seems you have used that position of authority, of responsibility and the way that people looked at you, talk of ‘polo Paul’ made it clear you had a level of standing. With that level of standing comes responsibility and you abused it. Not classic abuse of trust, although there is an element for some of these offences but this is more an element where you have sought to use the position you have to remain invisible”

DC Bates continued “We believe that there are other women out there who have been targeted by this predator in a similar way. My message to them is, please come forward; you will be listened to and supported.

“If you have concerns or would like to speak to someone please do contact the investigation team on 01302 385625 or 101 and our specially trained officers will help you.”
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