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11 November 2011, 16:25
A Bolton man has been jailed for abuse that lasted more than 20 years.
Anthony Calvert was found guilty of six counts of indecency with a child, three counts of indecent assault, three counts of attempted rape and six counts of rape.
Calvert's abuse started when his victim was just five years old, in the mid 1980s. It continued until she was 26.
When the victim grew up and left Bolton, Calvert continued to make contact with her and threaten her if she did not do as she wished.
Calvert at one point found out that the victim had started a relationship and threatened to kill her boyfriend.
When the woman was 27, she made contact with Greater Manchester Police.
Calvert was arrested and then charged in January 2009. The week before his trial was due to start in October 2009, Calvert went on the run.
A number of attempts to trace him were made and he was eventually arrested in Somerset on 2 February 2011.
Detective Constable Jill Hardman said: "Calvert's abuse was frequent and sustained over more than 20 years.
The longer it went on, the more of a hold Calvert had on his victim and on her life. She grew up throughout all of this; she went from being a small child to a fully grown woman. Her innocence has been robbed of her and that cannot be undone.
It was therefore important that this manipulative and abusive man was brought to justice.
This has been really hard for the victim, but I hope that this sentence can now help her to move on with her life.
I would like to praise her for her bravery in coming forward and speaking out. Many people carry these emotional scars for their entire lives because they are too afraid to talk about what happened, and their attackers walk free.
Today's result highlights the importance of coming forward to police to report incidents of sexual abuse, no matter how long ago they may have taken place. It takes courage to revisit incidents of this nature but victims can be reassured that GMP takes all reports very seriously and any incident of historic abuse will be fully investigated in a sensitive manner by specially trained police officers."
Anyone who has been a victim of rape or sexual assault can contact Greater Manchester Police on 0161 872 5050 or 999 in an emergency. GMP has specially trained officers in place to provide a first class response to victims and help support them through the criminal justice process.
St Mary's Sexual Assault Referral Centre in Manchester, can also be contacted on 0161 276 6515. This provides a comprehensive and coordinated forensic, counselling and medical aftercare service to anyone in Greater Manchester who has experienced rape or sexual assault. Services are available on a 24-hour basis and people can access them either as a self-referral or via Greater Manchester Police.