Pilot's sex offence appeal dismissed
1:50pm Saturday 12th May 2012 in News
A pilot who had underage sex with a vulnerable teenage girl has failed in an appeal court fight to clear his name.
Martin Charles Nicholls, 32, a commercial pilot and flying instructor who also worked as a night club bouncer, “pressured” the 14-yearold girl for sex, then called her a liar when she went to the police.
Nicholls, of Crundale, was jailed for five years at Swansea Crown Court on May 27th last year, having been convicted of three counts of sexual activity with a child.
On Friday he asked Lady Justice Rafferty, Mr Justice McCombe and Judge Michael Pert QC, sitting at London’s Criminal Appeal Court, for permission to rely on fresh evidence which he claimed would lead to his exoneration.
The court heard Nicholls demanded and received sex acts from the girl on more than 15 occasions and also had full sex with her in his car when she was 15.
He was aware of her true age at all times, but he denied the offences claiming he had rejected her and she was out for revenge. That story was rejected by a jury.
His lawyers sought permission to put forward fresh evidence of an alleged conversation, said to have been overheard by a pub doorman, during which it was said the complainant demonstrated that she had made up the story of what Nicholls did to her.
But Lady Justice Rafferty, dismissing the appeal, refused to entertain the new evidence, saying it was “entirely tenuous and hearsay and doesn’t even begin to satisfy the requirements for fresh evidence to be put before the court.”