Couple warned they face prison for sexually assaulting teenager in their Sedbergh home

A COUPLE who sexually assaulted a 14-year-old boy at their home in Sedbergh have both been put on the sex offenders’ register and warned they are likely to be sent to prison.

Craig Foster, 47, and his 36-year-old ex wife Anne-Marie abused the boy when he made three midnight visits to gain his first sexual experience with them in the late 1990s.

The boy – who is now grown-up and gave evidence in a trial at Carlisle Crown Court - said he had been left so confused by what happened that at one time he thought he might have been gay.

He said it had had a “profound effect” on his life and had driven him to drink heavily. He only told anyone about it when he saw Craig Foster in the street last year.

Foster, who now lives in Kirkland, Kendal, pleaded guilty at Carlisle Crown Court to six charges of indecent assault.

His ex wife, of Mary Fell, Sedbergh maintained her not guilty pleas to three similar charges but was found guilty by a 10 to two majority verdict after a trial.

The pair were both remanded on bail for background reports. They will be sentenced on February 21.

Judge Paul Batty QC told them a custodial sentence was “extremely likely”.

During the four-day trial prosecuting barrister Katie Jones said Foster had used his wife as “bait” to attract the boy into their house, where they both assaulted him.

She told the jury of five women and seven men it happened because the boy was lacking in confidence and having no success with girls of his own age.

Craig Foster - then aged 32 and known as Barry Harding – invited him round to his house in Sedbergh to watch pornographic videos he had made of his 21-year-old wife, she said.

Then, Ms Jones said, Foster asked the boy to go back to the house at midnight because his wife “fancied” him.

The boy went because he was “flattered”, Ms Jones said, and once there he was shown into the bedroom where, with Foster’s wife lying on the bed smoking, he was told to strip to his boxer shorts.

Then, the court heard, Foster lifted his wife’s top and told him to touch his wife’s naked breasts.

The woman – the first the boy had ever seen naked – then performed a sex act, and got him to do the same to her, before sending him home to his mother.

Ms Jones told the jury it was the first of three consecutive nights on which the boy visited the couple’s home for sexual activity.

“Anne-Marie Foster was used effectively as bait to lure the boy to the house for her sexual gratification and that of her husband,” she said.

“He had mixed feelings and confused about what had happened,” she said. “It was his first sexual experience with a woman and it made him feel good.

“Because there was a naked woman there it made him want to go back for more experiences with her.”

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