A man who committed a series of sexual abuses against a young girl has been imprisoned following an inquiry led by specialised safeguarding officers in Leeds.

Michael King, aged 33, received a 10-year sentence at Leeds Crown Court today, subsequent to being found guilty by unanimous verdicts from the jury in a trial held in June.

He was found guilty of three charges of raping a child under 13; four counts of sexually assaulting a child under 13; and one charge of causing or encouraging a child to partake in sexual activity.

He received a 10-year term for the rape convictions alongside a concurrent four-year term for the other offenses. Additionally, a one-year extended licence period was imposed.

King was also registered on the Sex Offenders Register for life and subjected to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for life.

These offenses, spanning a six-month period, came to light last December when the victim disclosed the abuse to a friend.

King was apprehended on Christmas Eve and consistently denied any wrongdoing during the interviews, which persisted through Christmas Day. Initially charged with rape, he made an appearance at Leeds Magistrates Court on Boxing Day, where he was held in custody.

Officers from Leeds District Safeguarding Unit provided support to the victim during video-recorded interviews and conducted thorough inquiries, including the collection of forensic evidence. In-depth consultations with the Crown Prosecution Service led to King facing additional charges.

Detective Inspector Mark Tester, of Leeds District Safeguarding Unit, said: “King preyed on this vulnerable young girl and repeatedly raped and sexually abused her over several months for his own gratification. His actions have had a significant traumatic impact on the victim’s life.

“Officers have supported the victim throughout the investigation and the court process where she was able to give her evidence under special measures that allowed her account to be video recorded in advance of the trial to reduce the impact of the court process on her.

“We hope it will give her and her family some reassurance to know that King has now had to face the consequences and has received a significant prison term.

“We will always treat sexual offences of this nature very seriously and we hope that the successful outcome of this case will help to give other victims of similar offences the confidence to come forward knowing they will be listened to and supported.”