THE son of a senior politician tipped to be the next Welsh Labour leader and first minister was jailed for nearly nine years after being found guilty of rape.

Jonathan Drakeford, son of Welsh Government minister Mark Drakeford, was sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court after a jury convicted him following a re-trial.

The 31-year-old was found guilty of one count of rape and one count of assault occasioning actual bodily harm against a vulnerable woman in her 20s.

Jonathan Drakeford had attacked his victim with a paddle before raping her in Cardiff in November 2016.

He had pleaded guilty before the re-trial to attempting to groom a child after he was snared by a paedophile hunter group during the same period of time.

The court heard the defendant believed he was contacting a 15-year-old girl via Facebook.

Prosecutor Clare Wilks read out a victim impact statement on behalf of the complainant, which said that she had flashbacks and that she had been devastated "mentally and emotionally".

In mitigation, Nigel Fryer said his client had learning difficulties, was autistic, had an IQ of 68, a reading age of 10 years and two months and added that custody would be “extremely difficult” for him.

Judge Jonathan Furness QC told Jonathan Drakeford, of St Fagans Road, Fairwater, Cardiff, that he had subjected his victim to “humiliation and degradation”.

He said: “You humiliated her … this was all about you exercising your dominance over her.”

For the rape and assault convictions, he jailed him for seven years and six months and 14 months for attempting to groom a child, making a total sentence of eight years and eight months.

Jonathan Drakeford must register as a sex offender for life and is subject of a sexual harm prevention order for 15 years.

In a statement released to BBC Wales after his son was convicted last week, Mark Drakeford said: "This has been a distressing period for our family.

"Our thoughts are with all those caught up in it, especially the victim.

"There will nothing further to add to this statement on this personal and private matter."