A 55-year-old man from Salisbury has been found guilty of raping an 18-year-old woman.

James Owen was convicted of rape, two counts of sexual assault and conspiracy to commit sexual assault, following a trial at Winchester Crown Court which concluded on Thursday, May 23. 

Owen appeared with his partner Ellen Rae, 51, who was also found guilty of sexual assault and conspiracy to commit sexual assault.

During a nine-day trial, the court heard how Owen, who was working as a sports coach at the time, sexually assaulted an 18-year-old woman during physical training sessions which took place at his home between January and February 2021.

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And on another occasion, in February the same year, he raped the same woman in a hot tub at his home, while Rae was present.

Detective Constable Martyn Powell said: “James Owen used his position as a fitness coach to exploit a vulnerable teenage girl, by intimately touching her under the guise of exercising, this took place over a few weeks leading up to an incident where he lured the victim to his home address under false pretences, providing her with alcohol and later raping her in the presence of his partner Ellen Rae. 

“Rae played a key role in assisting Mr Owen, grooming the victim in the lead up to this incident.

“It takes great bravery to report incidents such as this to anyone, let alone the police. In this case the victim showed great courage in seeing this through over three years until trial."

Owen has been remanded in custody to await sentencing and Rae has been bailed.

Both are due to be sentenced on Friday, August 16 at Salisbury Crown Court.

Information about support available to victims of sexual abuse can be found here.