Evan Jones of Dre-Fach Felindre, Llandysul, was sentenced at Swansea Crown Court on Thursday, October 26.
Earlier this month, the 67-year-old was found guilty of two counts of rape and nine sexual assaults dating back to the 1980s.
He was acquitted of a further count of rape.
All involved the same victim, a girl aged between eight and 11 at the time of the offences.
Investigating officer Damon Watmough said supporting the victim to give evidence had been key to the outcome of the case.
“After all these years, the thought of having to face her abuser in court was understandably anxiety-provoking for the victim,” said Detective Constable Watmough.
“Her evidence was crucial to this case, and thankfully we were able to work with the courts to ensure she was protected by a screen throughout proceedings, enabling her to feel safe while speaking about what happened.
“Screens are just one of the special measures available to help support victims and witnesses to give evidence during traumatic cases, and they can make all the difference.”
Judge Geraint Walters handed Jones a 16-year custodial sentence, with order to serve 15 years minimum in prison, with a further year on licence.
A sexual harm prevention order (SHPO) was also issued.
Added DC Watmough: “It is difficult to come forward when things have been bottled up for so long, but I hope this outcome demonstrates to others who have experienced historic abuse that it is never too late to speak out.
“We’ll do everything we can to gather evidence and build a case, no matter how long ago the crime took place, and will support you throughout the whole process.”
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