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East Kent Rape Crisis Centre

Family Matters - counselling service for children and adult survivors of sexual abuse and rape

Victim Support - information for men and women affected by rape or serious sexual assault

Rape and Serious Sexual Offences Unit

The CPS South East's dedicated Rape and Serious Sexual Offences Unit (RASSO) deals with cases of rape and serious sexual offences.

Staffed by specially trained lawyers and paralegal officers, the unit offers specialist legal advice, decision making and support to victims. The RASSO unit works closely with a number of other organisations, including the police, to improve the service that is offered to the victims of rape, child sexual abuse and all other serious sexual offences.

The cases they deal with include:

  • rape cases, including attempted rape,
  • child sexual abuse cases, including historic cases,
  • all other serious sexual offences, and
  • all allegations of perverting the course of justice or wasting police time which arise from false accusations of rape and domestic violence

There may be occasions where a case of this nature is so complex that it is referred to the South East Complex Casework Unit.

The RASSO unit does not deal with cases where children have been physically abused or neglected or cases of indecent photographs, unless they are linked to sexual abuse.

Successful prosecutions by the RASSO unit include:

  • A man was given an eight year custodial sentence for raping a girl on the night of her 18th birthday party in Kent.. The victim was described as not really knowing what was happening or what she was doing due to the amount of alcohol she had drunk. Her friend saw the victim being raped and recorded it on her mobile phone.
  • A man was jailed 10 years, after being convicted of a string of sexual offences against two young boys. The 26 offences occurred between 2005 and 2010 and included sexual assault, sexual activity with a child, taking indecent photographs of one of the children and causing a child to engage in sexual activity. The children were aged between 10 and 15 at the time of the offences.
  • Three men, who worked at a residential school for boys in Kent, were convicted of non-recent charges of sexually abusing a number of boys at the school aged nine to 16 years old over a 30 year period.
  • A man who raped an 82 year old virgin at knifepoint was jailed for 10 years for the crime. His victim was so traumatised, she suffered a heart scare and had to be taken to hospital.