Hotel rapist jailed for seven years

Keith Heslop was jailed at the High Court in Edinburgh.
Keith Heslop was jailed at the High Court in Edinburgh.

A rapist who claimed he was a “typical man” was jailed for seven years today after taking a woman on a 350-mile round business trip during which he brutally attacked her in a hotel bedroom.

Keith Heslop left his victim bruised and distressed after the sex attack in the room which he had booked for him and his wife.

Heslop (45) had denied raping the woman at the Premier Inn at Bowtrees Services, Airth, but told a court: “I am a typical man. If it’s there you are going to have it.”

Judge Lord Malcom told him at the High Court in Edinburgh: “It goes without saying this was a very serious crime and only a substantial prison sentence is appropriate.”

The judge said it was clear from a victim impact statement prepared by the woman that the attack had “a devastating effect on her”.

Radiographer Heslop claimed during his trial that he had previously had sex with the 29-year-old, but denied any sexual contact with her on March 10 in 2011. The woman maintained that she never had sex with Heslop on other occasions.

During the assault Heslop, formerly of Spennymour, County Durham, grabbed hold of the woman’s arms, pulled her on to her back, gripped her ankles and forced her legs apart.

The woman told the court that she was trying to get free, crying and telling him to stop.

The victim was in a distraught state when she spoke to a relative on the phone after the attack and was still upset when the relative saw her later.

The woman had been in contact with a friend whom she told in a text message that she was going to Scotland with Heslop.

The friend said the victim had contacted her again the following morning and told her in a text: “He wouldn’t take no for an answer.”

She added: “She said a tooth was missing and that she was covered in bruises.”

The friend said she was also told there was later a message sent from Heslop saying he was sorry.

The woman said she had gone to see the victim a few days later after Heslop had brought her back to a village in County Durham.

She said: “I saw she had a tooth missing. She could hardly sit down as she was in pain. She looked a mess, to be honest. She took a long time to get in the car because she was sore.”

Father-of-six Heslop said he was travelling to Scotland after a company in Falkirk contacted his employers seeking a demonstration of equipment.

He said he booked a room at the hotel and was going to take his wife on the trip, but she rang him to tell him she could not get a babysitter.

He said that when it was suggested the other woman accompany him he had agreed. He maintained that he later sent her the text saying sorry for things he had said to her.

Defence counsel Margaret Breslin said her client had no record for violence or offences of a sexual nature.

Heslop was put on the sex offenders’ register.