Cricketer Alex Hepburn jailed for five years for raping woman as judge criticises 'foul sexism' of 'pathetic' WhatsApp conquest game

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He added: “You probably thought it was laddish behaviour at the time. In truth it was foul sexism. It demeaned women and trivialised rape – a word you personally threw around lightly.

“Only now do you realise how serious rape is.”

The judge said: “That night, Joe Clarke did nothing wrong – nor did she. You were definitely playing the sexist game that evening, making a nuisance of yourself at the bar.

“But you went home alone, drunk and frustrated. I have no doubt at that stage you planned to go to bed on the mattress at Joe Clarke’s.

“When you realised a sleeping woman was there, you saw a chance, climbed onto the mattress, rousing her.”

The woman told the court the first thing she remembered was waking, already unwittingly engaged in a sexual act.

His barrister, Michelle Heeley QC, said her client had expressed remorse.

In what the judge called a “brave” victim impact statement, the woman Hepburn attacked described her ordeal as “evil” and a “heinous crime”.

Judge Tindal praised her for giving evidence through two trials, adding: “I hope she can now finally be able to look to her future which will be, I am sure, bright.”



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