A SEXUAL abuser, labelled “a monster” by a family member of one of his victims, has been told he is likely to die while behind bars.

Roy Jacobs was jailed for 18 years after being found guilty of sexually abusing a young girl between the late 1990s and early 2000s.

The 75-year-old also admitted abusing another girl in the 1970s.

During his sentencing at Southampton Crown Court, Jacobs, who was said to be in “poor health”, was told he may be forced to serve the full length of his prison term.

Defence barrister, Andrew Houston, said Jacobs was likely to die while behind bars.

The court also heard an impassioned speech from a family member of one of the victims, who labelled Jacobs as “a monster”.

The tearful family member said: “My heart swells with pride. I’m so proud of her (the victim) for having the strength to come forward and show the world what a monster he is and has been.”

Prosecutor Rose Burns told the court how Jacobs, of Orchard Way, Dibden Purlieu, began sexually abusing one of his victims in the late 1990s and the other in the 1970s.

Ms Burns said one of the victims had initially been reluctant to disclose the abuse, after being threatened by Jacobs.

The victim came forward to the police last year.

During his police interview, Jacobs disclosed the abuse of his other victim.

In a statement, read out in court, one of the victims said Jacobs abuse would “haunt her for the rest of her life”.

She added: “It ruined my childhood. I felt like it was all my fault that these things happened to me.

“I have spent so much time wondering what I would have been like if this abuse didn’t happen.”

Jacobs was sentenced for nine counts of indecent assault and two of indecency with a child.

He pleaded guilty to eight of those counts.

Jacobs denied four counts, but was found guilty of three counts and not guilty of another by a jury following a trial at Southampton Crown Court.

Defence barrister Mr Houston said there was “little in the way of mitigation” but said Jacobs had pleaded guilty to some of the allegations and had alerted police to his abuse of his other victim.

He added: “It is more than likely he will die during the course of the custodial sentence that will be imposed upon him.”

In sentencing, Judge Nicholas Rowland said: “You abused that vulnerable child and threatened her and told her not to tell anyone.

“What you did was to destroy her childhood and what you did will stay with her for the rest of her life.”

Judge Rowland added that Jacobs would not be automatically eligible for release at the half-way point and would need the approval of the parole board first.

In a statement released after the sentencing, DC Hollie Wilson, who was the officer in the case, said: “These were horrific offences and I’m pleased that this sentence will mean that Jacobs is likely to spend the rest of his life behind bars.

“We would encourage anyone who has been a victim of child sexual abuse to contact police.”