Eleanor Williams: Woman who lied about being raped by eight men in Blackpool found guilty of perverting course of justice
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Eleanor Williams, 22, of Teasdale Road, Barrow, was found guilty of seven offences at Preston Crown Court on Tuesday (January 3).
She admitted another offence of intending to pervert the course of justice at an earlier hearing.
Jurors took three hours and 29 minutes to reach their verdicts following the 10-week trial.
When will she be sentenced?
Honorary Recorder of Preston Judge Robert Altham adjourned sentencing to March 13 and 14.
Malicious and fabricated lies
Williams’ trial, which began in October last year, heard she had accused a number of men of rape, going back to 2017, and told police she was groomed and trafficked by an Asian gang.
In July 2019, she told officers she was forced to the Blackpool area, subjected to violence, threats to kill and she was forced to have sex with eight men.
The investigation found she had booked herself into a hotel in Blackpool a couple of days before she travelled.
CCTV then confirmed that she stayed in her hotel, apart from a brief walk to a nearby shop.
The whole account was a complete fabrication.
The ‘finale’ to a series of false allegations
In May 2020, she was found by officers near her home on Walney Island with injuries which she claimed were inflicted by the gang after she was taken to a house in the town and raped.
But the prosecution claimed Williams caused the injuries to herself with a hammer, which was found with her blood on close by.
Her Facebook post was shared more than 100,000 times and sparked demonstrations in her hometown, however, the court heard this was a “finale” to her story and she had injured herself with a hammer
Jonathan Sandiford KC, prosecuting, said the incident was a “finale” to a series of false allegations made by Williams.
In his closing speech, he told the jury: “The defendant goes online to her social media contacts and effectively finds random names on the internet she presents as being victims of trafficking or perpetrators.”
Some of the people she made allegations about were real while others did not exist, the jury heard.
She had sent some messages to herself and in other cases, manipulated real people into sending messages she then claimed were from abusers.
Williams had falsely claimed business owner Mohammad Ramzan had groomed her since the age of 12.
While under cross-examination, Mr Ramzan asked Louise Blackwell, defending: “Don’t you think you have put my life through enough hell, or your client has?”
Williams said Mr Ramzan had made her work in brothels in Amsterdam and sold her at an auction there.
However the court heard that at the time, his bank card was being used in a Barrow B&Q.
Another man falsely accused of rape, Jordan Trengove, told the court the allegations had “ruined” his life.
What did the Crown Prosecution Service say?
Wendy Lloyd, Senior Crown Prosecutor with CPS North West’s rape and serious sexual offence unit, said: “Eleanor Williams maliciously and persistently made false accusations against several men who had the misfortune of being acquainted with her.
“She knew what she was doing each time and made these false allegations intending that these men would be investigated, potentially prosecuted or even imprisoned as a result of her actions.
“One man was in prison on remand for over two months as a result of her accusations.