The nephew of serial killer Rose West has been jailed for eighteen years after kidnapping and raping a twelve-year-old girl.
Steven Letts, 38, plied his young vulnerable victim with cocaine, cannabis and vodka after abducting her in the street.
He took her home after she asked him for a cigarette – and he offered her a joint.
The girl was with her support worker but went off with Letts after the encounter in Gloucester city centre on March 6 this year.
The trial heard Letts and the girl went back to his flat to drink apple vodka, smoke cannabis and coke.
She later became tired and went to sleep under a blanket in Letts’ bed and he climbed in and began ‘cuddling’ the child before initiating sex.
Letts, of Barton Street, Gloucester, had pleaded not guilty to abducting the girl on March 6 and raping her in his flat between March 6 and 8.
He was found guilty of both counts at Gloucester Crown Court and today locked up for 18 years.
Letts was given eight years for rape of an underage child and ten years for another offence of aggravated burglary to run consecutively.
Judge Tabor QC: ‘I am satisfied Mr Letts did believe she was 15, however that is the only mitigating factor I can derive.’
‘He deliberately isolated her from her carer and gave her cocaine, cannabis and alcohol. To say he felt a duty of care towards her is nothing less than remarkable.
‘There is no suggestion to the contrary that sex was non-consensual.
‘She was highly vulnerable – paradoxically one of her vulnerabilities was she looked much older than she actually was.’
The rape came to light when the girl asked a social worker ‘how long it’d take to find out if you are pregnant’.
A statement from the girl said ‘It went from cuddling to just like too far’ and the sex lasted 30 minutes.
The court heard the sex ‘started to hurt’ the child who wanted Letts to stop but felt guilty asking because he had earlier provided alcohol and cocaine.
Summing up the case two weeks ago Judge Jamie Tabor QC read the girl’s statement about events at Letts’ flat.
It said: ‘He kissed me and I said I cant do this because I’m only 15.
‘He told me sad stories like a couple of months ago he tried to strangle himself. I think he said that so that I’d feel bad and kiss him.
‘I did tell him I was 15 [instead of 12] because I thought I had more of a chance of getting drink and drugs.’
Letts claimed he was a ‘good Samaritan’ who had helped the girl when she was upset, and denied having sex with her, but this was rejected by the jury who heard DNA evidence to the contrary.
His aunt Rose West is now an inmate at HMP Low Newton, Brasside, Durham, after being convicted of ten murders in 1995.