A DANGEROUS child sex attacker has been jailed for four years after preying on a girl near York.

Four-times married John Wilkins, 54, abused the girl who he had got to know after visiting Stamford Bridge.

Within days of meeting the teenager, he showered her with affection which quickly moved from hugs and kisses to groping. He also gave her cards which called her his “special princess” and expressed his love for her.

Wilkins, of Chancel Road in Scunthorpe, protested his innocence up to the date of a trial, but then pleaded guilty to four charges of sexual assault on a child, and six charges of possession of a total of 20 indecent images of children. He was jailed at Hull Crown Court.

Wilkins had two previous convictions for indecent assault on females, for which he was jailed in 1982 for two years.

Wilkins lived in Scunthorpe, but used different names on dating websites and on a visit to Stamford Bridge, he assaulted the girl.

Crown barrister David Bradshaw said: “She tried to fight him off, but he was too strong.”

The girl told her father she was concerned about Wilkins, but only spoke out after his relationship with another woman in the town ended.

Wilkins was ordered by the courts to stay out of Stamford Bridge for 12 months while the matter came to court.

The court heard Wilkins has been married four times and is currently separated and has a daughter who he has not seen for 14 years. His barrister Brett Wilson said: “He says the incident happened because he could not control himself. He has problems with sexual activity. He was beaten by his mother as a child. He has had quite a disastrous life. He drinks and feels he has to get to rock bottom before he can climb up again. In her victim statement, the girl says she does not let it affect her and is somewhat stoical. She says she is getting on with her life, despite this horrific offending."

Jailing Wilkins for four years Judge David Tremberg said: “The risk of you re-offending is high. You demonstrated little or no insight in to your offending and practically no victim empathy. In my judgment you are an un-reconstructed sex-offender.” He said aggravating factors included the age difference and the repeated offending and said the girl may well have future problems forming relationships.

Wilkins was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders' Register and was made the subject of an indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order. Wilkins is banned from contact, of living with a girl under 16, without permission of the Social Services or a Court.