Nine years in jail for rapist
A convicted sex offender who subjected a woman to repeated ordeals of rape in the Borders was jailed for nine years at Edinburgh High Court last Friday.
Alan Hardie, originally from Galashiels, carried out a series of sexual assaults on the victim at addresses in the Scottish Borders after he was released from prison for raping another woman.
A judge told 53-year-old Hardie: "As a consequence of your dreadful conduct the complainer has had to take medication for anxiety and depression."
Lord Beckett ordered that Hardie should be subject to a further three years supervision under an extended sentence which the judge said was necessary to protect the public.
During an earlier trial, Hardie, of Annan Road, Gretna, had denied a series of sex charges, but was found guilty of two offences of rape which occurred between 1997 and 2015.
The sex attacks were committed at houses in Melrose and Kelso and during the assaults Hardie at times pinned the victim down.
During the trial, the 46-year-old woman denied that the sexual intercourse that had taken place was with her consent, when questioned by defence counsel Brian McConnachie QC.
Mr McConnachie told the court today that Hardie continued to maintain that he was innocent of the rape charges.The defence counsel said: "It does appear there is a fairly large support network of people who are standing by him despite the conviction."
He said Hardie was assessed in a background report as posing a medium risk of further general offending and sexual offending.
Hardie, who formerly worked at a recycling site, told his trial that he was previously charged with rape which had resulted in a four year prison sentence beginning in January 1994.
He said that during that sentence he took steps to address alcohol problems and had anger management courses.
Lord Beckett told him he would be on the sex offenders' register indefinitely.