A MAN whose partner is accused of murdering their two children in a Spanish hotel was yesterday facing jail after using hypnotism and violence to groom and sexually abuse a young girl.
Martin Smith, 45, who had regular access to the girl, abused her for almost a decade from when she was aged just seven, Manchester Crown Court heard.
The victim, now in her 20s, told the jury Smith would attempt to hypnotise her, hit and bully her, to ensure she complied with his demands.
Smith's own daughter, Rebecca, five, and son Daniel, 11 months, were found dead in the Hotel Miramar in the resort of Lloret de Mar on the Costa Brava on May 18. Smith had been arrested in Spain on a UK extradition warrant days earlier.
Their mother, Lianne Smith, 44, is being held by Spanish police on suspicion of their murder.
During the week-long trial Miss Smith choked back tears as she gave evidence from Spain in support of her partner of 18 years.
Via a grainy, black and white video link from what appeared to be an office, Miss Smith spoke directly at the camera as she was questioned about her partner.
The couple fled the UK in December 2007 after Smith had been accused of the child sex offences.
"We left to protect Becky, so... sorry, we left to protect her from Staffordshire Social Services," Miss Smith said.
And in particular to protect her from the social workers, who had a mission to take our daughter off us."
She added: "They had already made that threat on the telephone, they retracted that in front of our lawyer, but they made that threat."
Smith, originally from the North Shields, was extradited back to the UK earlier this year to stand trial and today a jury found him guilty of 11 specimen counts of rape, attempted rape, indecency with a child and indecent assault, spanning nine years from May 1995 to May 2004.
Smith will be sentenced at Liverpool Crown Court in February next year.