Step-father sexually abused daughter for years

HE BRIBED his step-daughter with lollies and chocolate to encourage sexual abuse that spanned years.

The 29 year old pleaded guilty in Rockhampton District Court yesterday to one count of maintaining a sexual relationship with a child and two counts of rape.

The court heard the abuse began in 2011 when the complainant was nine years old and continued for four years.

The defendant began a de-facto relationship with the girl's mother when he was 18 years old.

It was estimated by the victim the defendant had unprotected sex with her upwards of 100 times in that period and on several occasions she awoke to him raping her.

Crown prosecutor Alexandra Baker described the defendant's actions as "brazen”, as other people were present in the home during the abuse.

The abuse was uncovered when the victim alerted her school.

A police interview was conducted with the defendant on April 24, 2015, but he denied abusing his step-daughter and was released on bail two days later.

In breach of his bail conditions, the defendant stayed in a home with children under five-years-old and as result has been in custody since February 2.

The defendant didn't use violence during the span of his offending, but would sulk around the house if the complainant ignored his advances.

The case was set for trial, but on September 26, three days before the victim was due to pre-record her evidence the defendant entered a plea of guilty.

Defence Barrister Jordan Ahlstrand told the court his client had an unremarkable childhood, free from domestic and sexual violence.

Although the defendant didn't grow up around drugs, he began smoking cannabis frequently when he was 14 years old, socially drinking at the age of 16 and using methamphetamines at the age of 26.

Judge Michael Burnett said the "regular and almost systemic” abuse had "in a sense, damaged (the) girl forever”.

Mr Burnett sentenced the man to 10 years imprisonment for the maintaining charge and six years for each of the two counts of rape.

A serious violent offender declaration and domestic violence offence declaration will also be made.

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