A paedophile who repeatedly abused a young girl told her that he would drown her puppy if she told anyone what he was doing to her.
Kenneth Mantle, 62, subjected the girl to years of physical and emotional abuse in the 80s and 90s, threatening to harm her dog if she failed to do what he told her.
However, the victim eventually plucked up the courage to report him and he was jailed for 24 years at Grimsby Crown Court on Thursday for five counts of rape of a girl under the age of 16.
Detective Constable Nick Pearce said: ‘Mantle is an absolutely loathsome and vile man who showed no care and little regard for the young girl, using violent and heartless threats to terrify her into not telling anyone about the horror that he was putting her through.
‘His actions were absolutely incomprehensible, he inflicted untold suffering for his own perverse gratification, continuing even now by making the woman endure the harrowing ordeal of a trial.
‘However, the bravery the woman in this case has shown has been highly commendable and I want to offer my thanks for her patience and understanding throughout both the investigation process and court proceedings, as they have been long and complex processes.
‘Mantle will be behind bars for a long time and unable to commit any further offences, which is largely down to the woman’s courage in coming forward.
‘I would encourage anyone if you have been a victim of a sexual offence to please get in touch. We will listen and support you throughout the investigative process and do all that we can to hold those responsible to account and to bring them before the courts.’