High Priest rape sentence cut

Joshua "The High Priest", formerly Robert Wilson.
Joshua "The High Priest", formerly Robert Wilson.
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A RAPIST who evaded justice for 25 years before he was jailed for two terrifying attacks in Sheffield has had his sentence cut.

Robert Wilson - who changed his named by deed poll to ‘Joshua the High Priest’ - was jailed for 17 years in 2009. But his sentence has been reduced to 15 years on appeal.

The 53-year-old, formerly of Sunny Bank, Broomhall, posed as a taxi driver for his first offence in 1984 and picked up an 18-year-old woman who had just finished her shift at a city nightclub.

She walked to a nearby taxi office, where he was parked outside and got into his car, believing he was a legitimate cabbie.

She gave him directions to her home but the rapist drove the opposite way, stopped at a car park in Broomhall, and raped her in the back of his vehicle.

The following year Priest and an accomplice broke into a flat in Broomhall and subjected a 17-year-old girl to a horrific sexual attack at knifepoint.

Armed with an ornamental dagger he dragged the teenager out of her boyfriend’s bed and into the kitchen, where he swapped the dagger for a bread knife and attacked her.

At the time of the second attack police interviewed several suspects, including Priest, but there was not enough evidence to prove it was him.

Priest was caught in 2009 when South Yorkshire Police’s cold case review team matched DNA found at the crime scenes with the national database.

His DNA was on record after he was jailed for seven years in 1986 for raping and robbing a prostitute in Sheffield.

Priest was jailed for three years in 1993 for indecently assaulting a 10-year-old girl. Priest, a grandfather, applied for his “excessive” sentence to be reduced at the Court of Appeal.

Judge Roberts agreed, saying although his crimes “called for a severe sentence” 15 years was “appropriate”.

When he was jailed Det Sgt Ian Harding, head of South Yorkshire Police’s cold case review team, said Priest was “very dangerous” and Sheffield was “a safer place” with him behind bars.