Man jailed for 1988 kidnap and rape - Reading

12/09/2014

A man appeared at Reading Crown Court today, Friday, 12 September 2014, and was jailed for 11 and a half years after being convicted of a kidnap and rape which occurred in Reading in 1988.

Peter Holder, aged 48, of Tippett Rise, Reading, pleaded guilty to one count of rape, one count of indecent assault, and one count of kidnap at a hearing at Reading Crown Court on 06 August.

The offences happened in Watlington Street, Reading, on the evening of 05 March 1988. The victim, then a 30-year-old woman, was in a phone box when Holder, who she did not know, approached her and forcefully led her away before committing sexual offences against her.

He then transported her in a car and released her approximately two miles away in Shinfield.

Holder was arrested on 20 May this year and charged with the offences on the same day.

At the sentencing hearing he was also ordered to sign the Sex Offenders' Register for life and was issued with a Sexual Offences Prevention Order SOPO).

The historic offences were investigated by Thames Valley Police's Major Crime Review Team as part of Operation Scisco.

Adrian Foster, Chief Crown Prosecutor of Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "This case involved the kidnap, rape and indecent assault of a woman in Reading in 1988.

"The victim, a 30-year-old woman at the time, was in a phone box when Peter Holder, aged 48, of Tippett Rise, Reading, approached her and led her away by force before committing sexual offences against her. He then transported her in a car and released her approximately two miles away in Shinfield.

"The new and compelling evidence gathered by Thames Valley Police's Major Crime Review Team (MCRT) and presented by the CPS was so strong that Peter Holder recognised that justice had caught up with him and he had little option but to plead guilty to all the charges against him, which he did on 06 August when he appeared at Reading Crown Court.  This saved the victim from having to re-live the terrible events of that evening on 05 March 1988, and give evidence.

"This case highlights the commitment of the police and CPS to prosecute cases involving violence against women (VAW).  The outcome also demonstrates to people who commit such offences that they are never safe from justice and that our determination to ensure that justice is done remains undimmed, even years after offences are committed.

"This prosecution would not have been possible without the thorough re-investigation of the case by the Thames Valley Police MCRT, scientific developments, and the courage of the victim who was willing to support proceedings.

"Time has not diminished the effect this incident has had on the victim's life. She has waited 26 long years for today's result.  I hope that today's sentence will offer some comfort to her after all these years. Our thoughts are very much with her at this time."

Speaking following the sentencing, Principal Investigator Peter Beirne said: "The sentence today took into account Holder pleading guilty at the earliest opportunity. Despite this, the victim had to wait 26 years to finally see the person responsible for this horrific offence receive his punishment.

"The case against Holder was unusual as it is the second historic offence of which he has been convicted. In January 2010 he was sentenced to 40 months' imprisonment for an attempted rape, which took place in Reading in October 1987.

"The Major Crime Investigations Review Team has continued to reinvestigate these historic offences, and in doing so, obtained the evidence against him which led to his conviction.

"Thames Valley Police is committed to reinvestigating all serious crime and will use new evidence, new forensic techniques or changes in the law to try and achieve results for the victims and their families."