A FACTORY worker who gave a suicidal girl cannabis and had unprotected sex twice with her in 40 minutes, has been jailed for four years and two months.

Nathan Joel Rhodes' partner and a relative of the girl both warned him that she was 15 and underage, said Angus MacDonald, prosecuting.

But when she phoned him because she was feeling suicidal, he suggested she come to his Malton flat where he sexually abused her.

As a result, her education has suffered and she has twice been admitted to hospital after trying to take her own life, said Mr MacDonald.

The Recorder of York, Judge Paul Batty QC told Rhodes: "You were determined to have your way with this girl, underage as she was, and have your way you did."

He jailed Rhodes, 22, for four years and two months, put him on the sex offenders' register for life and made him subject to a sexual harm prevention order prohibiting him from having contact with children under 16 without the express permission of social services, also for life.

Rhodes, of Yorkersgate, Malton, pleaded guilty to sexual assault and two charges of sexual activity with an underage girl, as a jury stood by to try him. He also admitted failure to attend court.

His barrister Peter Byrne said he had, at the last moment, spared the girl the ordeal of giving evidence, though his nerve had failed him the previous day when he had skipped bail.

Rhodes had expressed his regret at causing the girl problems before he was first arrested.

Mr MacDonald said the girl and Rhodes had exchanged Facebook messages. Last September, she had turned to Rhodes for help when she felt suicidal and he suggested she catch a train to Malton.

He met her away from the station and took her to his flat where she smoked cannabis, which made her feel more depressed. Then he started the sexual activity, which lasted 40 minutes, and during which he did not use a condom.

At the end, he asked if she was using a contraceptive and when she said no, said he hoped she wouldn't be pregnant.

The offences came to light when the girl broke down at school and revealed that she was worried because she had had sex.