Paedophile jailed for 'public protection'

Fiona Evans

A drunken child abuser who carried out a copycat sex assault on a five-year-old girl has been jailed indefinitely for public protection.

A court heard yesterday that Michael Wilby’s latest offence, which took place in December, was “strikingly similar” to a previous incident for which he was locked up for 15 months in January 2004.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

On both occasions Wilby, 25, claimed to have been too drunk to remember getting into the girls' beds and despite being convicted of both matters by a jury he still maintained his innocence.

The earlier conviction for indecent assault involved a nine-year-old victim.

Prosecutor Michael Smith said Wilby was ordered to register as a sex offender for 10 years in respect of that matter.

Wilby was found guilty by a jury in June of sexually touching the five-year-old after he turned up at her home.

Judge Jonathan Rose described Wilby as “an entrenched paedophile” who had a propensity to sexually abuse very young girls.

Wilby, of Lower Edge Road, Elland, will have to serve a minimum of two years behind bars before being considered for parole, but Judge Rose stressed that he would only be let out then if it was thought he no longer posed a risk to children.

The judge also made Wilby subject to an indefinite sexual offences prevention order which restricts his contact with under-16s and ordered him to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.