Man jailed for 28 years for non-recent sexual offences against a child

A dangerous sex offenderhas been jailed for 28 years.

Keith Ruggles, 75, previously from Stratford appeared at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday April 18 where he was sentenced by the judge who called him a “dangerous” individual.

An investigation into Ruggles was launched in June 2022 after Essex Police received a report of non-recent sexual abuse against a child in south Essex. At the time of the report, Ruggles was in prison, serving a 21-year sentence for separate sexual offences.

Enquiries were launched within Essex Police’s Child Abuse Investigation Team, with the investigation being managed by PC Jane Grieve.

PC Grieve said “From the moment we received this report, our priorities were to support the victim and conduct a thorough investigation. Our enquiries revealed that Ruggles had sexually abused the victim on multiple occasions, starting when she was just nine-years-old.

“These enquiries can often take time, in order to be as thorough as possible. By January 2023, following consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service, Ruggles was charged with rape of a child under 13, three counts of assault by penetration of a child under 13 and sexual touching of a child under 13.”

He appeared in court in March 2023 and pleaded guilty to all counts. He appeared at Basildon Crown Court on Thursday April 18 where he was sentenced to 28 years in prison to run concurrently with his previous sentence.

The judge ordered him to serve a minimum of 20 years, meaning he won’t be eligible for parole until he’s 96.

PC Grieve added “This victim has conducted herself with dignity throughout this investigation and she should be extremely proud of the strength she has shown.

“No one should ever have to go through this and I hope that she is able to put this horrific ordeal behind her, knowing that Ruggles will be behind bars for an extremely long time.”