Former PM's aide jailed for raping second woman

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Mark Adams
Image caption,
Mark Adams is already serving seven years in jail for another rape in London

A former aide to Tony Blair and John Major has been jailed for a second time after raping a teenager in Edinburgh as she slept in his camper van.

The 19-year-old, who had been at the Edinburgh Fringe, woke to find 56-year-old Mark Adams having sex with her.

Lord Armstrong jailed Adams for seven years. He is already serving seven years for a rape in London after being convicted in January.

He was also convicted of a sexual assault in Wales last year.

At the High Court in Glasgow, Lord Armstrong ordered Adams to serve his latest sentence after the seven years he is currently serving. He was also put on the sex offenders register.

The court heard that after forcing his victim to relive her ordeal at a trial, Adams now accepted that he had raped the teenager in Edinburgh on 10 August 2017.

'Really traumatised'

During the trial, the former civil servant claimed he had consensual sex with her after she returned from a night out.

But, at the sentencing hearing, defence QC Gary Allan said: "Mr Adams has reflected on the evidence and he now accepts that whatever his thoughts at the time, whatever his view of the event, he now accepts that what he did amounted to rape."

The court had heard how the teenager left a nightclub in Edinburgh at about 05:15 feeling quite drunk and encountered Adams in Regent Street. He helped her into his camper van which was parked in the street.

She said: "He bent down and picked me up and took me towards his vehicle. I was quite drunk. I was struggling to get into the van. He got in behind me. There was a mattress there and I almost immediately fell asleep."

The woman said that she woke up to find Adams raping her and added: "I was just shocked and really traumatised."

Taxi driver James Campbell, 50, who saw the victim shortly after the rape told prosecutor Dorothy Bain QC: "She was distraught. She was totally broken."

'Calculated and manipulative'

Lord Armstrong told Adams: "You took advantage of a vulnerable woman in a calculated and manipulative manner when she was alone and making her way through the streets of Edinburgh.

"You are 56. You have expressed remorse. I may say, however, that is more than justified. A victim impact statement makes it clear your actions have had a devastating and detrimental effect on her."

Det Insp Kevin Harkins, of Police Scotland, said: "Adams is an arrogant man who preyed upon a woman as she walked home. He is a highly opportunistic offender who has no regard for those he attacks.

"I would like to commend the victim in this case for her courage and I hope that after today's sentencing, she is now able to move on from this horrendous ordeal."

The Cambridge graduate worked for the government for six years during the 1990s and served as a private secretary to both Tony Blair and John Major. He was awarded an OBE in 1997.

At Woolwich Crown Court in January, Adams was jailed for raping a 24-year-old woman as she slept at his house near Blackheath, south-east London in 2015 - the morning after the general election.

High-profile roles

He was also given a suspended jail sentence after being convicted of sexual assault in a Welsh court last year.

He offered a barmaid in a Tenby pub £300 to spend the night with him and told her: "That's a lot of money to you isn't it?"

When she said "no" Adams increased his offer to £400.

For that crime he was sentenced to six months in prison, suspended for two years, and ordered to complete a rehabilitation course.

After leaving the civil service, Adams set up a public affairs agency called Foresight Consulting in 2001. His company acted for clients including the Police Federation.

In recent years he acted as a lobbyist and held high-profile roles including chairman of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry and of the Professional Lobbying Company.

He also advised the Apprentice winner Michelle Dewberry as she attempted to become an MP.