THE paedophile who tried to kill himself half-way through his trial for child abuse is today behind bars.

David Drake, 61, lay unconscious for two days at York Hospital while the evidence continued at York Crown Court.

He was still unconscious when the jury convicted him of four rapes, eight acts of indecency with a child and two indecent assaults, all committed on the same girl over three years starting when she was four.

He was only discharged from hospital just before the New Year - and was ordered to appear in the dock at York Crown Court.

Recorder Nicholas Campbell QC adjourned sentence for pre-sentence and medical reports and remanded him in custody.

He told Drake: "You are fully aware of what happened in court after you left the hearing last year."

Drake, of Sandway Avenue, Thorpe Willoughby, had denied all the charges.

He started giving evidence late on December 19 and was expected to continue the next morning. But on December 20, he did not return, and his defence team revealed that he had been found unconscious with an empty pill bottle at his side and been taken to hospital.

At the hearing after the New Year, defence barrister Chris Smith said Drake was now under the care of his GP and only taking medication for high blood pressure.

"The medical profession have no concerns about a repetition of what he frankly tells me was an attempt to take his own life," the barrister said.

The judge called for a report on Drake's mental state before passing sentence.

Drake was briefly discharged from hospital for Christmas Day and Boxing Day, but returned to hospital before being finally discharged just before the New Year.

The jury during the trial heard that the abuse occurred when he was looking after the girl while her mother was at work.

On one occasion, he was virtually caught red-handed when the mother returned with a friend to find him and the girl in the kitchen together. The girl had no pants on.

Drake claimed the girl had soiled herself and he was changing her. The abuse happened 30 years ago.