A 61-year-old man from Stevenage has been jailed for 11 years for raping a woman in Cornwall in 1988.

Martin Butler was sentenced on Friday (April 21) after being found guilty of rape and buggery following a trial in February at Truro Crown Court.

At the trial, it was described how the victim had been in a relationship with Butler and they visited his parents’ home in Mevagissey in August 1988.

After spending an evening out in the village, they returned to the property and went to bed.


The victim said she had woken up later to find her hands were tied behind her back and her legs were tied together.

She also reported that Butler put his hand over her mouth and nose, so she could not breathe.

As he raped her, she thought she was going to die.

After he released his grip and untied her arms, he left the room and she freed herself.


She went downstairs and confronted him before going back to the bedroom and barricading herself in.

Butler left the property and did not return before she had left to go home a couple of days later.

She did not report the rape at the time, believing she was his only victim.

But in 2018, she saw a social media post and realised there were possibly other victims, and with the help of a friend she contacted the police.


Two of his alleged victims appeared as character witnesses for the prosecution after their cases had been discontinued by police elsewhere in the country.

Detective Constable Sarah Davison, from Devon and Cornwall Police, said: "We are pleased justice has been served and that Butler has been sent to prison where he will stay for a considerable time.

"We wish to pay tribute to the victim, for her resilience and courage in coming forward and giving evidence."

The victim said: "I'd like to say thank you to the jury for listening to all the evidence and seeing the truth unfold. It can't be easy for the general public to digest the severity of his offence.

"I would also like to thank the two people who stood in my trial as bad character witnesses. We heard of their own encounters with him and how it affected them. I believe there may be others still out there."