Colwyn Bay railwayman John Linegar jailed for 16 years for abusing girl in signal boxes
The perverted past of former railwayman John Linegar caught up with him today when he was jailed for 16 years.
Former British Rail workers had regarded Linegar, now 74, of Colwyn Bay, as a respectable man.
But it emerged that while in work he seriously sexually abused a little girl in signal boxes, and elsewhere.
Linegar of Grosvenor Road, was convicted of five rapes and five indecent assaults dating back 30 years following trial at Caernarfon on Monday.
He denied all charges.
Prosecuting barrister Simon Mills said the rape victim’s early life had been ruined by the defendant.
The woman, now in her 40s, recalled that he had been a signalman at Chester and nearby Helsby and Shotton.
He worked alone at the signal boxes and that gave him the opportunity.
Chester was too busy for him to have sex with her but he did not want to arouse suspicion by only taking her to quieter or more remote signal boxes.
She told how it had dominated her life and stolen her innocence as a child.
Linegar showed no emotion as the 16 year term was announced.
Judge Rowlands ordered him to register with the police as a sex offender for life.
“Many years ago, you took away a young girl’s childhood,” Judge Rowlands told him.
“She ought to have been having the happiest time of her life. Instead you destroyed her childhood by repeatedly raping her,” he declared.
Judge Rowlands told the defendant that he had gone through life looking after number one and denying everything.
No doubt he was enjoying his retirement but that had now been taken away thanks to the complainant’s courage to come forward.
“You have got away with it for many years while the victim has had to live with what you did to her,” he said.
“You took advantage of a child and you did so repeatedly.”
It had a profound effect upon her.
“You really could not care less about the harm you caused that lady as she now is,” Judge Rowlands told him.
In a victim impact statement, the woman said that the defendant appeared to think that they were in a relationship and he would tell her they could have some fun.
So many times she wanted to tell what was happening to her but could not find the courage and she hated herself so much for being such a coward.
Linegar received concurrent 16 and 12 year sentences for the rape and indecent assault charges.
In welcoming today’s outcome, Detective Sergeant Sophie Woods of St Asaph CID said: “The sentence reflects the serious nature of the offences and should send a clear and stark warning that this type of crime will not be tolerated by North Wales Police or the courts.
“All reports will be thoroughly investigated with the intention of ensuring that those responsible face justice for their actions, regardless of when the offences took place.”
Iwan Jenkins, Head of the Rape and Serious Sexual Offences Unit for CPS Cymru-Wales, said: “The abuse committed by John Linegar over a sustained period was both reprehensible and shocking – and it is right that he has been made to face up to his actions in a criminal court.
“I applaud the courage of those who came forward to report what happened. It is their testimony that has resulted in Linegar’s conviction for these callous and disgusting crimes.”
Amethyst Team provide specialist services to support victims and encourage anyone who has been the victim of a sexual offence to come forward.
Former Colwyn Bay rail worker sexually abused girl in signal boxes
A former British Rail worker was yesterday warned he faced an “extremely lengthy” jail term after being convicted of sexually abusing a girl in signal boxes.
John Linegar, 74, of Grovesnor Road, Colwyn Bay was found guilty by a Caernarfon crown court jury of five rape charges involving her and five indecent assaults .
The jury were discharged after failing to reach verdicts on three further charges involving two other alleged abuse victims.
Judge Rhys Rowlands told Linegar, who was remanded in custody: “The sentence will be extremely lengthy, well into double figures.”
The prosecution will consider whether to seek another trial on the outstanding charges.
Opening the case, prosecutor Simon Mills told the jury Linegar denied all the allegations “saying they were lies.”
The rape victim, now in her 40s, recalled he had been a signalman at Chester and nearby Helsby and Shotton.
She told the jury: “He worked alone in signal boxes, it gave him the opportunity.”
She added: ”All I have managed to do is bury it or brush it under the carpet. It has dominated my life, my relationships and friendships.”
Linegar showed no emotion as the verdicts were announced.