A CONVICTED paedophile has been sentenced to at least two-and- a-half years in prison for fresh offences.
The 69-year-old man sat with his head bowed in the dock of Tamworth Local Court, dressed in prison greens, after pleading guilty to one count of indecently assaulting a child under 16 years and committing an act of indecency on a child under 16 years.
The man, who cannot be named because of a non-publication order, won’t be released from prison until 2016.
Magistrate Roger Prowse was scathing of the 69-year-old who has prior offences.
“The reality is he is a serial paedophile,” he told the court, adding they were “filthy, disgusting actions”.
The man was charged in February by detectives attached to the Child Abuse Squad.
The offences date back to last September and November.
For legal reasons The Leader is unable to say exactly where or who the historic or fresh offences were committed against.
Crown prosecutor Colin Dalrymple said the offences were in the middle range of the scale.
“A very grave breach of trust,” Mr Dalrymple told the court.
“The offender had become a friend of the family ... where he was trusted to be with the family.”
Mr Dalrymple told the court he wasn’t sure whether there had been any real remorse shown by the offender.
“This is an 11-year-old girl ... and would cause the court considerable concerns,” he said.
He cited a pre-sentence report which rated the man as a low-risk sex offender.
“I don’t know how,” Mr Dalrymple said, citing his prior convictions.
Magistrate Prowse said he couldn’t work out “for the life of me” how the Probation and Parole Service classed the man in the low-range category of male sex offenders.
“That is beyond belief ... and absolutely against reality,” he said.
Legal Aid Commission solicitor Rae Parker told the court her client should be sentenced to a prison term.
“I don’t think there was anything available other than a custodial sentence,” she said.
“The age of the child ... she is an 11-year-old.
“She is vulnerable.
“I regard the matter as extremely serious.”
But Ms Parker said her client should be given a 25 per cent discount for pleading guilty to the offences in a prior court appearance, preventing the need for the victim to give evidence.
However, Magistrate Prowse didn’t agree, telling the court the matter first came to court in April but the man didn’t plead guilty until August.
“While he’s entitled to some discount, it’s not 25 per cent,” he said.
Ms Parker argued her client was fast approaching 70 years old and was “not a man in good health.”
In sentencing, Magistrate Prowse said the man had muttered the line, “Don’t tell anyone,” to his victim, and was “fairly well integrated in their family life.”
He said the man had an “absolute ... false delusion that somehow the 11-year-old girl was acting in a provocative manner towards you”.
“Filthy, perverted, disgusting actions,” he told the court.
Mr Prowse said the offender actively groomed the child and abused her trust in the locations where the offences were committed.
“You wormed your way in like a grub,” he told the court.
The man interrupted the proceedings telling the court he “never went there in the morning, ever,” referring to the victim’s house.
However, the 69-year-old was sentenced to 12 months’ prison without parole dating back to August 7, when he first went into custody.
He was then handed a two-year sentence without parole to commence on April 7, 2014, for the second offence.
Magistrate Prowse said he declined to set a non-parole period because “the community needs to be protected from you.”
The man will be eligible for release in April 2016.