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Former soldier Gareth Wood, from Canterbury, jailed for child sex abuse and rape

By Sian Napier

An ex-soldier who raped a child under the age of 13 has been jailed for 14 years.

Gareth Wood, 34, committed serious sexual abuse offences and grooming, said Allister Walker, prosecuting at Canterbury Crown Court.

He said the offences came to light last year following a phone call to the police.

Soldier. Stock image, posed by model.
Soldier. Stock image, posed by model.

Wood, of Long Meadow Way, Canterbury, was arrested and admitted the offences.

His computer was seized and indecent images of children were found, along with search terms.

Wood, who had no previous convictions, admitted nine charges of serious sexual abuse of a child under 13, including rape.

Nathan Palmer, defending, said Wood had committed extremely serious offences.

The case was heard at Canterbury Crown Court
The case was heard at Canterbury Crown Court

“He feels genuine remorse and accepts full responsibility for his offending,” Mr Palmer told the court.

He added that Wood had joined the Army but was medically discharged after a year when he was injured in training.

In addition to the jail term, Recorder Mark Ockelton gave Wood an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.

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