An Alexandra man has been jailed for more than four years for raping a woman in front of her baby daughter.

Kevin Robert Kannewischer (33) appeared in the Dunedin District Court on Wednesday, after being convicted of one charge of rape after a jury trial.

Judge Michael Crosbie described Kannewischer's behaviour as "violent, gratuitous conduct".

The rape happened in 2005.

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The woman was bathing the baby when Kannewischer stopped her before the offending.

"You put the baby in a cardboard box in the lounge, without her having the opportunity even to dress her.

"She said she didn't want to have sex with you."

Lawyer Anne Stevens QC said there was no premeditation in the offending.

Judge Crosbie said harm was "inherent in the offence itself".

"You took something from her and she'll never get it back. She wants to be her old self again."

The victim described herself as "lost" and said her life had been badly affected, Judge Crosbie said.

She suffered from anxiety, and was on medication.

"She has lost the ability to trust people."

However, she had said she felt stronger for having told her story during the course of the trial, Judge Crosbie said.

Judge Crosbie said there was "nothing to suggest remorse" but nonetheless he still gave Kannewischer a discount on his sentence in consideration of Kannewischer's young age at the time.

He noted there was also a considerable gap in his offending, since he had stayed out of the court system for a decade.

He was sentenced to a term of four years, two months' jail.