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EDITIONS
Tuesday, 18 February, 2003, 16:49 GMT
Waiter jailed for underage sex
Mehmet Ocak and Rachael Lloyd
Rachael Lloyd gave evidence at Mehmet Ocak's trial
A waiter who had underage sex with a 14-year-old holidaymaker has been jailed for five years for statutory rape.

Rachael Lloyd, 15, from Wrexham in north Wales, returned to the city of Gaziantep in south eastern Turkey to testify at the trial of Mehmet Ocak, 24.

Bob Lloyd, Rachael's father
Bob Lloyd accompanied his daughter

She burst into tears as the verdict was passed and vowed she would love her boyfriend forever. As he was led away to jail, Ocak said "this love would never end".

He had been sentenced to a total of five years, three months and 10 days after being found guilty of charges of statutory rape and holding by force because Ms Lloyd was underage.

Ocak had denied the charges - claiming he did not know Ms Lloyd was 14 at the start of the relationship, believing she was 15, the legal age of consent in Turkey.

The teenager - who calls the barman Steve - said she was in love and pledged to help him avoid prison by giving evidence at this trial.

Despite having said in previous statements that the pair had had sex, she told the court on Tuesday that she had not consumated their relationship.

Aged 14, she first met Ocak in the Mediterranean resort of Marmaris, while on holiday in May 2002.

The teenager returned to Turkey later that summer and became engaged in the presence of her grandmother and her older sister, according to the Turkish authorities.

It was my idea to run away to Turkey and to have sex with him. I'm just going crazy worrying about him locked up in a prison cell

Rachael Lloyd
Ocak told the court that Ms Lloyd said she planned to stay in Turkey and that he had warned her of the consequences.

"I told Rachael that problems would occur and she had to go. But she did not go," he said.

"Rachael said that she loved me so much and wanted an engagement with me. We got engaged at the hotel.

"Rachael went crying and unwillingly."

But on the return journey home, she refused to board the plane and took a taxi back to Marmaris.

Locator map showing Gaziantep
Rachael was found in Gaziantep

A day later, staff from the British Consulate located her and sent her back to Britain.

But in December 2002, even though she was still only 14, she returned to Turkey by herself, reportedly on a false passport, pledging to marry Ocak.

Within days, she called her grandmother - with whom she was living - claiming she had married.

At this point Ocak told the court that he was aware that Ms Lloyd was only 14 but insisted he did not force her to do anything.

"I did not hold her by force and I did not rape her. I knew that she was under legal age," he said.

"I did not say that I had a sexual intercourse with her. I accepted her to stay with me since she was my fiancÚ.

"Her grandmother called me and said that Rachael was wanted. Thus, I learned about all these developments. One day later, police came and detained us."

In fact the Lloyd family had reported her missing and within days, the couple were tracked down to Ocak's flat following a search by Interpol and Turkish police.

Chaperoned

The runaway was greeted by a media scrum when she returned to Britain, and her parents, Bob Lloyd and Karen Thomas, admitted they needed help to deal with their "mixed-up daughter".

Back in Turkey, Ocak was arrested and charged and held in custody.

Ms Lloyd has consistently said that she wants to go back to Turkey and that the pair have become engaged since her return.

She had hoped her evidence would have freed Ocak from prison.

As she flew out to Turkey with her father last Friday, she said: "I am going to Turkey because I don't see why he should be locked up.

"It was my idea to run away to Turkey and to have sex with him. I'm just going crazy worrying about him locked up in a prison cell."

Mr Lloyd said his daughter would be closely chaperoned at all times during the trip.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Jonny Dymond


More from north east Wales
See also:

16 Jan 03 | Wales
30 Dec 02 | Wales
13 Dec 02 | Wales
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