Grime artist Solo 45 has been jailed for 24 years for raping four women and holding them against their will.
The 33-year-old, whose real name is Andy Anokye, was found guilty at Bristol Crown Court of 30 charges relating to a two-year period.
These were 21 rapes, five counts of false imprisonment, two counts of assault by penetration and two of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
The musician, who was part of the grime collective Boy Better Know, derived sexual pleasure from torturing the women by water-boarding, interrogating, assaulting and raping them.
He claimed the acts were part of consensual role play, or a game he played called “Catch me, Rape me”, and said he told women he would “terrorise” them.
The Guardian also covered the sentencing:
In impact statements the victims spoke of the deep, ongoing trauma they suffered. One said: “He tortured me for hours and in those moments I would’ve complied with anything for terror of him torturing or hurting me again.”
Another wrote: “I had nightmares for about two and a half years where I would regularly wake up screaming and crying.” And a third said: “He has ruined my life.”
The judge, William Hart, ordered Anokye to serve 24 years in prison and a further five years on licence. Hart told him he had “no sexual boundaries” or empathy for his victims, and that he had become addicted to the “perverted pleasure” he took from the abuse.
The judge said: “I’m entirely satisfied that your career as a music artist was flourishing at the time of this offending and that you would have gone to great heights. Your convictions have deprived you of that career, but the fault is yours alone.”
The Sun detailed Judge Hart’s comments upon sentencing:
Judge William Hart imposed an extended sentence, meaning Anokye will serve 24 years in prison and five on licence, and ordered he must sign the sex offenders register for life.
The judge told Anokye, who appeared by video link from HMP Long Lartin, he had “no sexual boundaries or empathy for those concerned”.
He said Anokye had “become addicted” to the “perverted pleasure” he took from abusing the women in the case.
The judge added: “You have a background that includes gang associations and criminal violence.
“I am entirely satisfied that your career as an artist was flourishing at the time of this offending and would have gone to greater heights.
“The popular acclaim that greeted performances of your best-known track Feed Em To The Lions was evident in the various videos that the jury saw of your performances.
“You were part of a well-known collective – Boy Better Know. The fellow artists from that collective have achieved great success.”
The judge said none of those fellow artists were aware of Anokye’s behaviour, or “dark side”.
He added: “But none of those artists, dedicated to their craft, knew of your dark side and they are in no way tainted by your misdeeds which were carried out in a wholly private and hidden way.
“Your convictions have deprived you of that career but the fault is yours alone.”