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Man locked up for 23 years for 19 sexual offences against two girls whilst he lived in Billingshurst

A man is beginning a 23-year sentence after being found guilty of 19 sexual offences against two girls.

Michael Coburn, of Spitfire Way in Hamble-le-Rice, Hampshire, was convicted of offences against two victims between 2018 and 2022 while he was living in Billingshurst.

An investigation was launched after the two girls came forward to police and disclosed the assaults in January 2022.

Coburn, 49, was arrested and charged with 11 counts of sexual assault of a child under 13; four counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in a sexual act; two counts of assaulting a child under 13 by penetration; and two counts of attempted rape of a child under 13.

He pleaded not guilty to all charges but was convicted by a unanimous jury following a trial at Lewes Crown Court in August 2022.

At the same court on September 29, he was sentenced to 18 years in prison with a further five years on licence. He will also be on the Sex Offenders Register for life.

Detective Police Constable Jason Berney, from the Safeguarding Investigations Unit, spoke of his admiration for the victims coming forward.

He said: “I would like to commend the bravery of both victims in coming forward and giving evidence. They have been supported by specially-trained officers throughout the investigation.

“This was an extremely emotional case and the courage of the victims in coming forward has allowed us to ensure that a dangerous offender is no longer on the streets.”

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