John Dickson used his pet snake, named Mitch, to torture his victims
John Dickson, 38, from North Lanarkshire, Scotland used his pet snake, named Mitch, to abuse one woman, performing a series of vile acts while he raped her, the High Court in Glasgow heard.
Between 2000 to 2017, the former labourer tortured four women who mainly lived in Motherwell, subjecting them to horrific abuse.
He was found guilty of five charges, including rape and domestic abuse.
Police found one of Dickson’s victims hiding in a cupboard near his flat, holding on to a knife for fear her abuser would return and beat her.
Judge Graema Buchanan from the High Court in Glasgow said Dickson’s victims had suffered “degrading and humiliating” ordeals.
He told Dickson: “This was a course of criminal conduct of a quite extreme nature and you have shown no remorse whatsoever.”
Dickson’s first victim recalled how he used to force himself on her, raping her over a five-year period., she added: “I would say to him, ‘No, I don’t want to’.”
Prosecutor Duncan McPhie told jurors: “This all occurred on a number of occasions – three to four times a week between 2000 and 2005.”
Dickson’s threw his 9ft long snake onto his victims
Dickson’s second victim revealed how he had raped her – even when she was asleep – and was “terrified” when he used his pet snake to torture her.
The victim said she was spit on, beaten and attacked so frequently she felt the abuse was “normal”.
Dickson subjected her to verbal abuse, calling her “slut” and other derogatory names, and even raped her at a toilet while the pair were on a train to Edinburgh, Scotland.
Mr McPhie said: “She told a policeman that he had assaulted her.
Dickson, 38, was found guilty of five charges, including rape and domestic abuse
“She told him she had a knife in her hands because she was scared of Dickson.”
During the trial, Dickson admitted to being abusive but denied he had raped his victims, saying the sex was always consensual from both parties.
Dickson’s fourth victim said he “controlled” her, and she was “forced to tell lies to the police”.
Detective Inspector David Cockburn, of Police Scotland’s Domestic Abuse Taskforce said: “Dickson terrorised his victims, subjecting them to horrific levels of violence and abuse.
Dickson denied raping his victims, but admitted he abused them
“It is their courage in coming forward that has brought us here today and this sentence is a recognition of the horrific ordeals they experienced.
“It should also serve as a warning to anyone who thinks they will get away with domestic abuse.
“Police Scotland will not tolerate domestic abuse. We will always investigate and we will proactively pursue all avenues to bring abusers to justice.”
Dickson has been jailed for 14 years, and authorities will monitor him for four years after his release.