A PONTYPOOL man has been jailed for ten years for raping a child under the age of 13.

At Cardiff Crown Court, Johnathan Ford, 32, of Newman Road, admitted raping the girl and sexually assaulting her.

He also pleaded guilty to 15 counts of making indecent images of children and possessing 237 indecent images.

Police were alerted to the offences in April this year when images were found on Ford’s tablet computer. His home was searched and multiple devices and disks were found, all containing indecent photographs.

Prosecutor Marian Lewis said Ford originally told officers that he could not explain how the images got onto his devices as he only downloaded games. She added: “[But] the history of the computer shows that searches had been conducted looking for child pornography.”

The court was also told Ford had made his own indecent photographs.

In mitigation, Rupert Lowe said that Ford had been involved in a serious accident in 2004 when he was hit by two buses and had not been able to work since.

He added that Ford had suffered anxiety and depression since the accident and that he was now sorry for his actions and wished he could turn back time.

Judge DJ Hale told Ford: “She was a very young child, who knows what harm that will do to her in the future.

“I’m not told of any specific emotional damage but it would be very surprising if there were not.”

He sentenced Ford to 10 years’ imprisonment for rape, four years for assault and six months for making indecent images of children, which will run concurrently.

He was also sentenced to two months behind bars for breaching a restraining order, also to run concurrently.

Ford has been ordered to sign the sex offenders’ register for life and is banned from ever working with children.

Judge Hale added: “This is a totally shameful case, you should be thoroughly ashamed of yourself.”