Preacher denies week of rape for woman's disobedience

Harrow Observer, UK/October 15, 2009

A preacher accused of raping a woman on seven consecutive days as punishment for disobeying him has insisted he is innocent.

Paul Denton, 46, of Edison House, in Barnhill Road, Wembley, made his alleged victim's life 'hell on Earth' and repeatedly beat her, jurors have heard.

He even changed his name to Lord Denton by deed poll, Inner London Crown Court heard last week.

In his bid to promote Christianity, Denton opened up his former home in Daventry, Northamptonshire, allowing local deprived children to do as they pleased, jurors were told.

The 32-year-old woman claims she endured a series of attacks at the hands of her religious tormentor, with him punching her in the face, headbutting her and pulling out her hair.

Asked if he raped her, Denton told the jury: "No, at no point at all."

Outlining his youth, he spoke of how he was born in Croydon and moved with his parents to South Africa when he was eight months old. But when they split up his father kidnapped him.

Denton said he was sent to boarding school and studied law at university for a year. But he was forced to drop his degree and leave South Africa in 1981 after a controversial political protest.

Jurors were told about Denton's unusual past and behaviour, including alleged use of prostitutes.

His alleged victim said he also believed women should be submissive to their husbands and to the Lord Jesus, 'because the scripture says'.

In addition, he had been to Russia for a month to customise a Zeppelin airship for spreading Christianity.

When he returned in late 2007, he told the woman he had slept with a Russian doctor. But when the alleged victim challenged him about his attitude, he got angry and took revenge on her, raping her 'day after day', it is claimed.

Denton was reported to police last February.

The preacher denies seven charges of rape, four of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, one of witness intimidation and one of indecent assault.

The trial continues.

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