Northampton man on trial for carrying out sex offences on children thought of himself as a 'hard man', court hears

Nicholas and Joan Taylor deny a total of 112 charges - mainly sexual offences against childrfen. They face a trial at Leicester Crown Court expected to last seven weeks.
Nicholas and Joan Taylor deny a total of 112 charges - mainly sexual offences against childrfen. They face a trial at Leicester Crown Court expected to last seven weeks.

A jury has heard how a Northampton man on trial for committing numerous sexual acts on children alongside his wife was a "bullying" figure who liked to think of himself as a local "hard man”.

In the opening day of a seven-week hearing at Leicester Crown Court this morning Nicholas Taylor, 47, faced 73 charges ranging from sexual activity with and child rape of a child, to supplying class A drugs to another.

His wife, Joan Taylor, 43, who worked as a prostitute in Northampton, denies 30 similar charges, which also included charges relating to indecent photographs of children.

Opening the case today, David Herbert QC, said the majority of the offences allegedly took place when the Taylors lived in Pitstone Road, Briar Hill.

He said: "Nick Taylor was the dominant figure and you may think there is no doubt about that.

"It's the prosecution's case that he could be violent, threatening and controlling.

"That included his wife and anyone he came into contact with."

The prosecution alleges the offences were committed against 11 victims, male and female, 10 of whom were children.

Most of the offending took place between 1996 and 2006. The couple married in 2001.

The court heard, how some of the victims were supplied class A drugs to make them more "compliant" with the sexual offending, namely crack cocaine.

Mr Herbert QC, said for some of that period Joan Taylor, worked as a "street worker," he said.

"Nicholas Taylor was aware of that and at times controlled her activities," the QC added.

"The evidence shows he is violent controlling bullying and manipulative."

"He was one of those people who wanted to have the reputation for being on his estate as a 'hard man'."

The trial continues.