A Chester man has been found guilty of raping a child.

Mark Buckley was convicted of the charge following a seven-day trial at Chester Crown Court, which concluded on Tuesday, March 5.

The 48-year-old of Hoole Road, Chester, has been remanded in custody and is to be sentenced on April 26.

He was also convicted of two counts of sexual assault of a girl aged under 13.

During the trial, the jury heard how the victim was just 10 years old at the time the offences were committed.

On the night of the incident, Buckley was supposed to be looking after the girl at a home in Winsford. Instead, he entered her room and pinned her to the bed before raping her.

The victim attempted to stop Buckley, but he refused, only eventually stopping the attack when his girlfriend arrived.

The victim was initially too scared to report the incident but she spoke out to a family member in August 2023 and the matter was reported to police, leading to Buckley’s arrest.

Following the verdict, Detective Constable Bryony Aston said: “Firstly, I would like to commend the victim for the bravery and courage they have shown in coming forward and talking about what happened to them.

“Buckley has shown no remorse for his actions, and while the victim will never be able to forget what happened that night, I hope that the verdict reached today will provide them with some reassurance and help them to move forward.

“Nobody should have to experience what the victim has been though and if anything can come from this case, I hope that it encourages other victims of sexual offences to come forward and report them to us.

“Cheshire Constabulary takes any allegation of sexual offences extremely seriously, and any allegation will be thoroughly investigated, with the wishes and needs of the victim as our main priority.

“Victims should never feel ashamed to talk about what they have been subjected to. They will receive the help and support they need from our specialist officers, as well as from other support agencies we work alongside, and all victims of sexual offences have the right to anonymity.”

The victim's family added: "We would like to thank DC Aston for the help and support that she has provided throughout this case. She has gone above and beyond to help us through this difficult time and the determination that she has shown should be commended.

"Thanks to her work, Buckley is now facing the consequences of his actions and as a family we can now start to move forward and rebuild our lives."

To report any sexual offence, call Cheshire Constabulary on 101 or visit https://www.cheshire.police.uk/ro/report/rsa/alpha-v1/v1/rape-sexual-assault-other-sexual-offences/