Child molesting model could face more jail

Reid Barnes arriving at Newcastle Crown Court today'***no byline please***
Reid Barnes arriving at Newcastle Crown Court today'***no byline please***
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A child-molesting model from Ripley could face a longer prison sentence.

Pervert Reid Barnes, 23, of Upper Moreheay, used the child’s game hide and seek to lure a 14-year-old girl into his clutches at the Castle Keep, in Newcastle.

The schoolgirl fell victim to the model, who was locked up for a year last month.

She faces having to give evidence in court after prosecutors applied to have the sentence of Barnes, who had thousands of Facebook followers, looked at again.

There will be a trial of issue after a dispute between prosecutors and Barnes’ legal team about whether he groomed the girl.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that will mean the teenage victim giving evidence, in what is known as a Newton Hearing.

Recorder Eric Elliott QC, who imposed the original sentence on the basis there was no grooming, rescinded it and there will be a further hearing to determine the facts.

The judge, who remanded Barnes in custody, said: “Having heard the [prosecution’s] application it seems to me there may be certain matters I failed to take into account which I should have taken into account.

“Accordingly I order a full and proper inquiry to be held.

“The sentence should be rescinded and there will be a Newton Hearing which will take place as soon as possible.

Barnes, who had 11,000 Facebook followers, met the 14-year-old on the social networking site and started chatting to her.

And when he travelled to Newcastle for work on a clothing assignment, he met up with girl and took her to the Castle Keep.

Barnes, who was with two friends, then decided to play hide-and-seek to get the victim on her own before having sex with her in a secluded spot close to the historic landmark.

Afterwards, he persuaded the frightened teen to keep quiet but continued to contact her via text messages.

He was caught out when he was arrested for a separate but similar matter at his Ripley home and police discovered the messages on his mobile phone.

The girl was too frightened to tell anyone what had happened and it wasn’t until police in Derbyshire contacted her family that the offence came to light. Although no further action was taken on the other alleged offence, Barnes admitted an offence of engaging in sexual activity with a child.