A PAEDOPHILE has been jailed for 20 years for historic sex offences after abusing two underage girls, one aged just 11.

Paul Johnson told one of his victims it was 'our secret', warned her that no-one would believe her if she told anyone and threatened to kill himself if she ever did.

However, the 56-year-old paedophile was found guilty of rape, nine indecent assaults and one count of sexual intercourse with a girl under 13 following a trial at Worcester Crown Court.

Johnson, of Archenfield, near Madley, was jailed for 20 years for the abuse after unanimous guilty verdicts were returned last Wednesday.

Johnson was aged between 15 and 19 years when he abused his first victim, then aged between six and 10 years.

The second victim was abused at a later date when she was aged between '11 or 12' and her late teens.

Caroline Harris, prosecuting, read out victim personal statements in which one of the women described how she suffered nightmares, intrusive thoughts, flashbacks and panic attacks as a result of what Johnson did to her.

In a victim personal statement said: "The abuse made me feel dirty. I had low self-esteem and self-worth.

"I feel I will never be free of the effects of the abuse."

The victim asked herself why the perpetrator did not admit his guilt earlier to 'save me the anguish' of going through a trial.

The second victim said: "He continuously said 'no-one would believe me', 'it's our secret and 'if anyone finds out I will be on the streets, in the gutter'."

She said the abuse 'felt horrible', that she had lost her childhood and that he had even threatened to kill himself if she reported the abuse which she now recognised was 'emotional blackmail'.

Johnson told her he would 'lie through my teeth until I was blue in the face' if asked about what he had done by the police.

The woman also described how she felt 'dead to emotion' and was angry that Johnson had a wife because he 'does not deserve it'.

Jason Aris, defending, said Johnson had been married for 12 years and had worked consistently throughout his adult life.

He added: "It's his first custodial sentence. It's a sentence that is undoubtedly going to be a difficult sentence to serve."

Judge Nicolas Cartwright described Johnson's behaviour as 'entirely selfish', calling him 'controlling and manipulative' and told him: "You knew it was wrong."

He said the first victim felt 'understandably but unjustifiably' guilty when she learned that Johnson had gone on to abuse a second girl. The judge said 'she has no rational reason to blame herself', telling the defendant: "The blame is all yours."

The judge said this victim would have to 'live with the scars you left upon her', telling him: "You stole her childhood from her."

Judge Cartwright told Johnson: "The reason you have dug your heels in and held your head in the sand is obviously because you have built a life for yourself and no doubt kept a lot of your past from your wife in particular. That has involved a good deal of lying no doubt."

The judge jailed him for 20 years with an additional two your licence period because he identified Johnson as an offender of particular concern under section 236A of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

This means he must spend at least half his sentence in custody before his case is referred to the Parole Board for consideration.

As a convicted sex offender Johnson is no subject to notification requirements and registration provisions.