Chichester rapist has appeal thrown out

Court
Court

A RAPIST who assaulted his victim in a terrifying campaign of violence in Chichester has failed in an appeal court bid to clear his name.

Lorne De Angelista carried out a series of degrading and violent attacks on the woman, which included stabbing her in the face with a pen, banging her head against a wall and strangling her.

The 47-year-old, of Upper Rock Gardens, Brighton, committed the offences in Chichester during the late 1980s and early 1990s, but was not brought to justice until almost 20 years later.

He was found guilty of two counts of rape and one of buggery at Lewes Crown Court in June last year.

He had previously been convicted of assault causing actual bodily harm and child cruelty at Chichester Crown Court in December, 2013.

De Angelista, also known as Lorne Hovey, was jailed for a total of 15 years.

During the trial, the woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told the court she had not been in contact with De Angelista for two decades.

But in April, 2012, she saw him on a night out – an event which had a ‘profound’ effect on her.

She described how the defendant punched, kicked and strangled her in a string of abuse spanning a period of seven years.

De Angelista launched a bid to challenge his convictions as well as his sentence, at London’s Criminal Appeal Court on Friday, February 13,.

During the trial, his victim said she had been subjected to a campaign of physical and sexual assaults at his hands and also that he had assaulted her young daughter.

Speaking in court, she said: ““I just put up with it because he used to scare me. He used to make me feel like everything was my fault.”

Jurors were also told about other incidents of violence towards women in the intervening years.

On appeal, his lawyers argued this created overwhelming prejudice which meant his trial was unfair and his convictions ‘unsafe’.

But, dismissing his appeal, Mr Justice Wilkie, sitting with Lord Justice McCombe and Mr Justice Green, said the judge was entitled to let the jury know about these incidents.

He said the evidence was relevant and supported the victim’s claims against him.

On rejecting his appeal, the judge added: “It is not arguable that the total sentence of 15 years for these offences was in any way excessive.”