Leeds man jailed for controlling behaviour towards sex worker but cleared by jury of rape and controlling prostitution charges

A man has been jailed after being convicted of controlling or coercive behaviour towards a Leeds sex worker.

By Tony Gardner
Saturday, 7th November 2020, 6:00 am

Anthony Blackman was found guilty of the charge after a trial at Leeds Crown Court.

The jury found Blackman not guilty of raping the woman and not guilty of a further charge of controlling prostitution for gain.

Prosecutors described the victim as being vulnerable and said she was subjected to violence and threats by Blackman.The woman was abused for years before reporting Blackman to a police sex worker liaison officer.

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Anthony Blackman was jailed for two and a half years.

Blackman, 53, of Reginald Terrace, Potternewton, denied any offending,

He claimed it was the woman's "free choice" to be a sex worker and denied controlling her.

Blackman also denied the rape charge, claiming he did not have sex with her on an occasion alleged.

Blackman was jailed for two and a half years.

Prosecutor Richard Woolfall read a victim statement to the court on behalf of the woman as Blackman was sentenced yesterday (November 6)

She said: "(Blackman) has destroyed my life. I will always be on anti-depressants all my life.

"My head is so messed up I can't cope with life.

"Just because I have been found guilty does not mean I can move on."

Sentencing, Judge Andrew Stubbs QC told the defendant: "You are a big and powerful man with a dominating personality and I have drawn the conclusion that you dominated her.

"I am satisfied so I am sure that the repeated acts of violence against her are correct.

"If she did not do as you pleased you let her know in no uncertain terms

"You treated her like something that you had stepped in."

The judge praised the efforts of police officers involved in the case.