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16th May 2022

Doctor Strange star jailed for eight years over child sex offences

Danny Jones

Zara Phythian jailed for child sex abuse

She appeared in the first Doctor Strange film in 2016

Actor Zara Phythian has been jailed for eight years at Nottingham Crown Court following the grooming and historical sexual abuse of a girl who was aged between 13 and 15.

She is charged with 14 counts of sexual activity with a child between 2005 and 2008 and Phythian’s husband, Victor Marke, was also sentenced to 14 years in prison for jointly abusing the same victim, as well as the indecent assault of a second girl whose identity has not yet been revealed.

Doctor Strange extra and husband jailed

Judge Mark Watson told them that he believed the sexual abuse of the joint victim had been pre-planned, adding that she was “clearly aware of the first incident but pretended to be asleep.” The pair were found guilty on Thursday.

He went on to add that Phythian, who appeared as the ‘brunette zealot’ in 2016’s Doctor Strange, was shaped by the influence her partner had on her from a young age. Both parties plead not guilty to all charges.

Nottingham-born Phythian has worked as a martial arts instructor in Mansfield for many years – a job which helped her secure the role in the Marvel blockbuster – and had denied the allegations from day one, calling them “bull****” in a police interview from 2017.

Doctor Strange

The prosecution said that Marke had engaged in numerous “threesomes” with at least one of the girls and Phythian from as early as 13-years-old – and jurors heard that the victim was asked to “play dare” and copy a sex act the stuntwoman performed on her husband.

As per the BBC, Nicole Hepburn from the Crown Prosecution Service said the girls (now adults) reported the incidents many years after the fact: “This abuse may have occurred some years ago, but that makes it no less serious and nor is it a barrier to justice… I would encourage anyone who has been abused in the past to come forward with the knowledge that the CPS will take your case seriously.”

You can report any suspected instance of child abuse by ringing 101 or contacting your local council or the NSPCC. If you suspect someone is in immediate danger, call 999 immediately.

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