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Jailed: Sick father and son paedophiles brutally raped young child in west Wales

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TWO sick child rapists, a father and son, carried out one of their “brutal rape attacks” on a child in west Wales, have been sentenced to a total of 33 years imprisonment.

Arthur William Bowditch, 73, and his son Arthur Stephen Bowditch, 54, are both from Wiltshire, but carried out their attacks on children as young as three in the 1980s and 1990s.

One of the infants was left so badly injured by William Bowditch that she required surgery to repair damaged tissue following the assault.

The court heard that he also sexually assaulted a girl with a rough wooden object.

Stephen Bowditch raped another young child at an undisclosed location near the west coast of Wales. The court heard that the little child cried out for help during the assault however her step-father failed to hear her because of the sound of grass cutting machinery.

Statements from the victims, who cannot be named for legal reasons, were read out in court.

‘I have been a victim but now I’m a survivor,’ said one, ‘and facing my abuser is my way of taking back control of my life’.

Another said that the ‘degrading’ things that had been carried out to her as a child had taken away her childhood. However she has now forgiven her abuser.

‘This helps me forget, let go of my hate and not let the defendant take any more of my life’.

William Bowditch and Stephen Bowditch committed multiple counts of rape and indecent assault on the girls during the 1980s and 1990s however it isn’t believed that they committed them together. They were previously convicted at trial of the offences and appeared before Swansea Crown Court this week for sentence.

An earlier sentencing hearing had to be adjourned after Bowditch Snr failed to turn up even though his wife had dropped him off at Swindon railway station that morning.

Detectives familiar with the case were sent to Swansea station to check CCTV, and the court heard no trace of the defendant could be found nor there was no evidence he had been on the train he was supposed to have caught.

The delayed sentencing hearing was told Bowditch had in fact got on the wrong train at Swindon and instead of travelling to Swansea had arrived in Bristol where he had “engaged with people on the street” before falling into the harbour.

He then returned home where he was arrested early the following morning by Wilshire Police and taken into custody.

The son has a previous conviction from 1989 for indecent assault on a girl under 14, the court heard

Judge Huw Rees said the defendants’ victims had been “denied a childhood” by their actions, and said the statements from the women had been “harrowing” to listen to. He said it was clear that the abuse inflicted by the defendants had profoundly affected the women while William Bowditch had acted out of “degenerate and unhealthy sexual lust”.

Arthur William Bowditch, of Selby Crescent, Swindon, Wiltshire, was given a 21-year extended sentence comprising 20 years in custody followed by a one-year extended licence.

Arthur Stephen Bowditch, of Morse Close, Chippenham, Wiltshire, was sentenced to 12 years in prison. Both will be registered sex offenders for the rest of their lives.

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Appeal following thefts from outbuildings and unattended vehicles

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE investigating a series of thefts that have been reported in the Pembrokeshire village of Spittal overnight.

People in the area near Haverfordwest have reported thefts from unattended motor vehicles, garden sheds and garages.

Officers this morning arrested a 38-year-old man from outside the force area on suspicion of theft. He remains in police custody at this time.

We would like to appeal to the residents of the area to check their vehicles and outbuildings to ensure they have not been the subject of a theft.

We would also like to hear from anybody who may have CCTV or doorbell footage of any suspicious activity overnight.

Sgt Paul Boorman said: “Officers are investigating the matter and we have someone in custody.

“We would now like people to check if they have also had anything stolen.

“Now is a good time to remind people of the importance of securing outbuildings and to make sure that vehicles are locked.”

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Sgt Boorman, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Farming

Pembrokeshire Politicians Tuck into a Farmers Breakfast

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PEMBROKESHIRE Senedd Members Paul Davies and Samuel Kurtz joined local farmers and farming representatives for a breakfast to celebrate the Farmers Union of Wales (FUW)’s Farmhouse Breakfast Week 2023. Mr Davies and Mr Kurtz attended the breakfast event in Crundale to champion the benefits of a healthy breakfast and meet with local farmers to discuss the challenges currently facing the sector.

Mr Davies said, “It’s always a pleasure to attend the annual Farmhouse Breakfast and this year was no exception. I’ve always proudly supported Pembrokeshire’s produce and today was another excellent showcase of what our local farmers have on offer. We had some very interesting discussions and I’ll certainly be doing all I can to push the Welsh Government to better support our farmers as its Agriculture Bill makes its way through the Senedd. I’d also like to encourage the people of Pembrokeshire to support Farmhouse Breakfast Week too by buying local produce and enjoying a healthy Pembrokeshire breakfast – there’s plenty of excellent produce on offer, please take advantage and help support our farmers.”

Samuel Kurtz MS, local Senedd Member for Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire, added:

“Farming is often an isolated industry, and so the FUW’s Farmhouse Breakfast morning in Crundale Hall presented the perfect opportunity to get everyone together, in one room, talking and socialising.

“From council farm tenants to fourth-generation cattle farmers, everyone was brought round the table to taste some fantastic locally sourced produce.

“It was great to be there supporting the FUW and the DPJ Foundation, a fantastic charity that operates across the country, supporting those in agriculture and rural communities with their mental health.”

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Wales v Ireland travel advice from Transport for Wales

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TRANSPORT FOR WALES is offering rugby supporters rail and bus services for Wales’ opening game of the Six Nations against Ireland on Saturday (4 February).

Following a successful introduction for last year’s Autumn international series, a number of return coaches will be operating to compliment a full rail timetable. They’ll be running from Llanelli, Abergavenny, Cwmbran, Caerphilly and Pontypridd with prices starting at just £6 return.

To book TfW return coaches visit Coach | Wales v Ireland | Transport for Wales (tfw.wales)

More than 25,000 rugby fans are also expected to travel in and out of Cardiff by rail on Saturday, and customers are being urged to plan their journeys in advance and check before they travel.

Adam Terry, Head of Planning at Transport for Wales said: “We look forward to welcoming tens of thousands of rugby supporters onto our services for the first of Wales’ two home fixtures in this year’s Six Nations.

“We will have every available train in use and will be strengthening services to and from Cardiff to provide as much capacity as possible.

“Peak time rail services before and after the match are likely to be very busy, so passengers are advised to make use of earlier and later trains, or book one of the TfW coaches to ensure you have a guaranteed seat to get to the game and home afterwards.

“A queuing system will be in place at Cardiff Central after the game and we’ll be working alongside the other train operators to get passengers home as quickly and as safely as possible.”

Passengers are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the queuing system before travelling to the game.

TfW coaches will drop off and depart from Tresillian Way in Cardiff city centre, a short walk from the Principality Stadium. Return coach tickets must be booked in advance and existing rail tickets are not valid for coach travel. Capacity is limited and tickets will be issued on first come, first served basis.

Rugby supporters travelling to the Welsh capital on Friday 3 February, the day before the Wales v Ireland match, should be aware of industrial action taking by train drivers at 15 other train operating companies.

TfW staff are not involved in the strikes, but its services are likely to be busier than normal because there will be no Great Western Railway, West Midlands Railways, Avanti, or CrossCountry services operating on the Friday.

Great Western Railway services will be operating as normal on Saturday 4 February and they will once again be utilising their electric trains to provide extra capacity on the South Wales mainline.

For more information about the industrial action on Wednesday 1 and Friday 3 of February should visit Train strikes | Rail strike dates and industrial action | TfW

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