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Last Updated: Thursday, 26 February, 2004, 17:02 GMT
Holiday romance barman jailed
Mehmet Sedat Ocak
Jailed again: Ocak received the same sentence for underage sex
A Turkish barman has been jailed for a second time over his relationship with the underage Welsh teenager, Rachael Lloyd.

Mehmet Sedat Ocak, 25, was sentenced to almost five years in jail by a court in Turkey for having sex with Lloyd, who was 14 when the pair met. He had denied the charge.

Last year, a conviction and the same-length sentence on the charges had been overturned on appeal after he had served five months.

Her family is coming to Turkey in May to meet my family, when we will talk about the wedding ceremony
Mehmet Ocak

Hours before the latest verdict, Ocak said he still planned to marry the Wrexham teenager, who had told the first trial that their relationship had not been consummated.

The couple's extended holiday romance caught the attention of headline writers around the world in December 2002 when it emerged the love-struck schoolgirl had used a false passport to run away to be with the man she called Steve.

The pair met when Lloyd holidayed in Marmaris, on Turkey's Mediterranean coast, with her grandmother, Carol Lloyd.

Rachael Lloyd and Mehmet Ocak
Ocak said he was still in contact with Lloyd over the internet

Turkish authorities later said she then returned to the area and became engaged to Ocak in the presence of her grandmother, with whom she was living in Wales, and her older sister.

But it was when she defied her estranged parents and ran away - after apparently forging her father's signature - that the police in Wales and Turkey launched a hunt for the schoolgirl and her adult boyfriend.

Lloyd's father, Bob Lloyd, said the youngster had contacted the family to say she would not be returning to Wales.

Interpol and Turkish Police at first feared the couple had gone into hiding in Istanbul, but detectives quickly tracked them down to Ocak's home in Gaziantep, south east Turkey.

A reluctant Lloyd, described by her father as "strong-headed," was returned to Britain.

Vow to marry

Her mother Carol Thomas later admitted: "We're talking to social services to try to get some help for her because she's so mixed up."

In February last year, Ocak was convicted of statutory rape, which he had denied, claiming he thought the teenager was 15 - the age of consent in Turkey - as well as holding a minor by force.

That conviction and sentence was overturned on a technicality in the May, prompting the re-trial in Gaziantep.

Despite his new sentence, Ocak has vowed he will marry Lloyd once he is free.

Before being sentenced he said: "I am in touch with Rachael everyday over the internet.

"Her family is coming to Turkey in May to meet my family, when we will talk about the wedding ceremony."

Father in jail

There was no word from Lloyd's family on any wedding plans.

However, Bob Lloyd, who has always maintained he will not allow his daughter to marry until she is 18, is now in prison himself.

Last month he was jailed for 12 years for the serial sexual abuse of three girls (though not his daughter Rachael).




SEE ALSO:
Runaway bride - waiter to appeal
30 May 03  |  North East Wales
Waiter jailed for underage sex
18 Feb 03  |  Wales
Runaway bride called to testify
16 Jan 03  |  Wales
Teenage runaway found in Turkey
13 Dec 02  |  Wales


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