A MAN who sexually abused two young girls has been jailed for more than five years.
Preston Crown Court heard how Lee Martin assaulted the two primary school pupils in two separate incidents.
The judge was told a complaint was initially made to the police regarding his behaviour towards the first child, but no prosecution was brought at that time.
The allegation resurfaced when the another complaint followed concerning the second girl.
Martin, 23, of Melville Road, Bispham, had previously pleaded guilty to two offences of sexually assaulting a child under 13.
He was sentenced to five years and one month in jail.
The court heard Martin realised his actions “effectively ruined the girls’ lives”.
Mark Ainsworth, prosecuting, said the offences had involved touching the girls under their clothing.
Martin was arrested last October.
Waheed Omran-Baber, defending, said: “For him, these proceedings have come as quite a relief.
“It came to a point where he was finding it difficult to live with the actions he had taken.
“He is quite glad these proceedings have come to a head and he is to be punished for his actions.
“He has shown remorse for what he has done. It is a step in the right direction.
“He thinks he has effectively ruined the girls’ lives by what he did.”
Mr Omran-Baber explained the defendant volunteered himself to look after the children to get money to feed his drug and alcohol habit.
Martin had used both from an very early age, describing his childhood as non-existent.
He reached a point where he was drinking nine litres of cider a day.
Mr Omran-Baber said: “The defendant says he was going through a very bad patch in his life at the time of the offences”.
Judge Susan Beech said she did not accept money had been the sole motivation for Martin volunteering to look after the two children.
She added: “Your pleas of guilty came very late in the day, resulting in your victims having to suffer an immense level of stress facing the prospect of giving evidence in a jury trial.”
Martin will remain on the Sex Offender’s Register and be subject to a sexual offences prevention order indefinitely. The order includes a bar on any unsupervised contact with a child under 16.