A WOMAN has been found guilty of duping another female into having sex during a “two-year relationship” by pretending to be a man.

Blade Silvano, 40, from over the Herefordshire border in Shropshire, is facing a 'substantial' jail term after being convicted of two counts of sexual assault by penetration against an unnamed female victim.

The court heard Silvano tricked her into having sex on at least two occasions by using an 'unknown object' that the victim thought was "her penis".

The defendant hid her true gender by always wearing a t-shirt and boxers, turning the light off and never allowing the victim to see or touch "her genitalia," the trial was told.

The couple also 'sexted' every day for nearly two years, and had even started planning a wedding.

But the jury heard they only met physically on a few occasions as Silvano had 'lied' about having cancer and being in the British Army.

A jury on May 23 unanimously found her guilty of two charges of sexual assault by penetration after a trial at Cambridge Crown Court.

She was remanded in custody ahead of her sentencing and told her to expect a "substantial" custodial sentence.

His Honour Judge Philip Grey said he could not grant her bail after he said she gave "some of the most dishonest evidence I've ever heard on my time on the bench."

He told her she had been convicted of two "extremely serious offences" and described the evidence as "utterly, utterly overwhelming."

Prosecutors said the pair met online in late 2016 when Silvano had posted her status on Plenty of Fish as a "man looking for a woman".

They first met in person in December that year and 'kissed' before going on to have 'intercourse'.


The victim said she thought she was having sex with a man called Blade Mendez and had never consented to doing it with a female.

She added: "When we had sex, Blade would usually blindfold me.

"He would never allow me to go near his genital region and I never saw his penis.

"I was never able to put my hands underneath his clothes or down his boxers.

"He told me he was a man and it was on that basis I agreed to have sex with him."

Silvano, of Bishop's Castle, Shropshire, had denied ever meeting the victim and said they had an 'online relationship' only that was all about 'roleplay' and 'fantasy.'

She said the thousands of messages between them were all part of the fantasy, as was the planned wedding, which had seen a registrar booked.

Silvano claimed she was 'open' about her gender from the beginning and, although medically a 'woman' on her birth certificate, didn't define herself this way.

She told the jury she was 'pansexual' and would often use the title 'Doctor' which she claimed she was entitled to do after completing an online PHD in ancient Greek history.

The trial also heard details of thousands of messages sent between the couple.

She told police: "This was our roleplay. It doesn't mean it actually happened. She can tell I'm not male. Her referring to me as a man is roleplay.

"She knew from the start."

She also said she had been tested for cancer but accepted she had never been diagnosed with it.

She claimed the breakdown came when the victim discovered she was already in another serious relationship through Facebook in 2018 and wanted to report her to the police as an act of "revenge."

Prosecution barrister Michael Hillman told her: "She was head over heels in love with you and you exploited that with your constant lies, stringing her along.

"And you did that because you got a kick out of it, stringing this woman along, holding out to be someone you are not."

Silvano will next appear in court on June 6 when her sentencing date will be fixed.