Twisted mum-of-one, 27, who helped her rapist boyfriend, 38, abuse two young girls sobs as she's jailed

A TWISTED mother-of-one and her rapist boyfriend were behind bars today over sexually assaulting two young girls.

As Tiffany Eccles, 27, and 38-year-old John Mills were locked up for a total of more than 26 years, relatives of the youngsters burst into applause in the public gallery and shouted: ''You filthy scumbags – hope you f**king rot.''

Eccles and Mills were arrested last November after the daughter of one of his closest friends told her mother she had been abused by the couple over a period spanning four years starting when she was just eight.

Another victim came forward after she learned of the arrest and she told a teacher at school. It emerged their ordeals only came to an end when Covid-19 lockdown restrictions prevented them from meeting.

Landscape gardener Mills, of Bury, Greater Manchester raped his first victim at least five times and made the girl watch him and Eccles have sex.

In a statement, the first victim, now 14, told officers: '"This has made me not want to walk this earth any longer. I have been suicidal for as long as I can remember and by the age of 14, I had tried to take my life four times.

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''What you did to me was sick and you both deserve everything coming your way. You've destroyed my life but I will not be silenced any longer. Before any of this happened and I was a bright and confident girl who walked around with a permanent smile on my face. I enjoyed life like any other child would and you ruined that.

''Now when I close my eyes at night all I remember is the repulsive things you did to me. You took advantage of me – a child and a minor – and you knew I couldn't fight back. Reporting you to police is my payback as I am strong enough to realise you will not ruin me any longer.

''I want you to sit there and listen to me as I had to do with you when you did all those horrible things. Hear my words – what you did will not define me.''

The second now 16 said: ''I was subjected to horrific things no child should ever be subjected to. They did what they wanted regardless of my feelings. They manipulated me. ''

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At Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester, Eccles also of Bury and who has a young son was jailed for seven years and two months after she admitted engaging in sexual activity in presence of a child under 13 and inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

Mills was jailed for 19 years and three months after he admitted rape, assault by penetration, sexual assault and causing a child to engage in sexual activity. Following his release from jail he will be on licence until 2043 under the terms of an extended sentence.

Mills held his head in his hands whilst Eccles wept as Judge Bernadette Baxter said: ''There was literally nowhere that was a sanctuary for these defenceless children when they were with you."

The court heard the first victim was targeted after Mills befriended her father.

Mr Jon Close prosecuting said the first attack occurred during a camping trip attended by the couple, the youngster's father and other friends.

In one incident, Mills raped the girl whilst Eccles was in another bedroom aware of what was happening. He also raped her on a sofa at his home.

During the hearing the mothers of both girls also gave emotion-charged statements detailing their heartbreak over the victim's ordeals.

In mitigation for Eccles, Anna Chestnutt said her client had started dating Mills when she was 18 and added: ''The offending was only ever instigated by Mills and she acted under his direction.

''She suffered a campaign of emotional abuse and manipulation at his hands. He demeaned her and left her trapped and in fear of him. He would threaten to leave her if she did not comply with his demands.''

In a letter to the court Mills said: ''I know I caused a great deal of trauma, hurt and pain to a great many people. I can't take back what I have done and make it right but I wish I could.

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''I didn't think about my actions at the time but I realise I have torn lives apart and innocent people now suffer for what I have done. I hope they will eventually find peace.''

Eccles and Mills were also ordered to sign the Sex Offender Register and abide by an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order. Both were barred from contacting the girls under the terms of a restraining order.

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