A woman involved in an attempt to get an allegation of rape against her brother dropped has been jailed.
Lisa Whiberley, 43, of Lime Tree Place, Stowmarket, had arranged for a threatening note to be placed on the victim’s car.
On Monday at Ipswich Crown Court Whiberley, who had pleaded guilty to conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, was sentenced to six months imprisonment.
The court heard how the victim had been left terrified by the contents of the note in which rapist Trevor Robertson told her to drop her complaint and not attend court.
Prosecuting, Reil Karmy-Jones said analysis of telephone calls from the prison where Robertson was being held on remand revealed how Whiberley had taken orders from him and then reported back “all done” after the note was delivered.
The note had been left on the woman’s car on January 7, two days before Robertson was due to appear in court for a plea and directions hearing.
Police were alerted and began an investigation, said Miss Karmy-Jones and the day after the note was delivered officers saw a car containing Whiberley close to where the Robertson’s victim worked.
On January 23 ahead of a pre-planned visit by Whiberley and other family members, prison officials carried out a strip search of Robertson and found a second note.
In a statement Robertson’s victim told police that she was frightened all the time and said: “I know he has contacts.”
After her arrest, Whiberly told officers: “I accept that I was a go-between between Trevor and the person who wrote and placed the letter.”
Defending, Aron Rollin said what Whiberley had done was a misguided attempt to help her brother which she now regretted.
Mr Rollin said: “She is deeply sorry about what she got herself involved in.”
Desbribing Robertson as “extremely manipulative”, Mr Rollin said: “She knew what he was asking her to do, she didn’t know exactly what he was saying or what was in the letter.”
Whiberley had neither written the letter or placed it on the car although she accepted that she was involved in making the arrangements.
Sentencing Whiberley, Ms Recorder Anesta Weekes said it she did not accept that Whiberley was unaware of the threats being made by Roberston
and said there had been “detailed planning” in the delivery of the note.
In July Robertson, 53, of Scotts Yard, Combs, was jailed for a total of 10 years after being convicted of holding a woman hostage at his home and twice raping her.
During the 18-hour ordeal Robertson tied up the woman, threatened her with a knife and said he would inject her with a so-called date rape drup if she resisted.
She eventually managed to escape during the early hours of November 3 last year and ran to a neighbours house to raise the alarm.
Roberston was found guilty by a jury of false imprisonment, making threats to kill and two offences of rape.