Victims praised for courage in helping to catch Colchester paedophile

The number of reported rape cases in Suffolk has risen by 40% in Suffolk, according to the latest Ho

Matthew Clarke, from Colchester, admitted 30 child sex offences (file photo)

Police have paid tribute to the victims of a Colchester paedophile who has been warned he will spend a "significant amount of time" in prison.

Matthew Clarke, of Delamere Road, was arrested after officers from Essex Police's Child Sexual Exploitation Proactive Investigation Team carried out a warrant in the town in November last year.

Clarke, 22, was subsequently charged with 30 child sex offences against 13 girls.

He pleaded guilty to all of the charges at Ipswich Crown Court last week and is due to be sentenced on September 8.

Detective Sergeant Ben Rushmere, of Essex Police, said: "Matthew Clarke exploited and preyed upon young girls for his own sexual gratification.

"Due to the excellent work of my team he was left with no option but to plead guilty to 30 offences.

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"He now faces a significant amount of time behind bars.

"I want to pay tribute to the courage of the girls involved and I hope this result will help them move forward."

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