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Child sexual exploitation is “top priority” in Plymouth, says charity boss

Published October 25, 2014 by JS2

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CHILD sexual exploitation is happening everywhere and should be a concern for everyone, according to the regional boss of a children’s charity.

Duncan Stanway, Barbardo’s South West assistant director, says tackling child sexual exploitation is a top priority for organisations working with young people in Plymouth.

Mr Stanway was speaking during a week of sexual exploitation awareness, supported by Plymouth City Council.

He said: “Child sexual exploitation is happening in towns and cities all across the UK and Barnardo’s has been leading the fight against this awful crime for many years now.

“Locally, we fund Plymouth Barnardo’s Against Sexual Exploitation (BASE), which has been helping children to rebuild their shattered lives.

“We are delighted to be working with Plymouth City Council to raise awareness of this important issue and hope it will help to highlight the warning signs to look out for, the importance of early intervention and how we can all work together to protect some of society’s most vulnerable young people.”

Councillor Sue McDonald, PCC cabinet member for children and young people, said: “I believe there is a very real need for greater public awareness to prevent child exploitation, and welcome this week as part of our continuous programme to prevent the sexual abuse of children.

“We are making sure that tackling child sexual exploitation is a priority for Plymouth City Council and everyone working for children and families in the city.”

The week of action involved workshops specialising in working with male victims; advice on reducing the risks for young people early in life; and stopping child trafficking and slavery.

The Herald

Man appears in court in Plymouth on child sex allegations

Published July 18, 2013 by JS2

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A MAN has appeared in court accused of raping a girl aged under the age of 16 more than 15 years ago.

Scott Mitchell, aged 40, allegedly raped the youngster in Plymouth in June 1998. He is also accused of indecently assaulting the girl between June and December that year.

Mitchell, of Morpeth Avenue in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, is further charged with inciting the complainant to perform a gross indecency. He did not enter a plea at Plymouth Crown Court.

Judge Paul Darlow set a trial date for November 18.

Mitchell was released on bail on condition he does not enter Plymouth, save for court appearances.

This is Devon

Predatory paedophile fails to cut sentence

Published July 16, 2013 by JS2

A “PREDATORY” paedophile jailed for the horrendous abuse of a ten-year-old girl during the 1980s – his third conviction for child sex offences – has failed to win a cut in his sentence.

Sick Sandy Cosburn, aged 59, left his victim profoundly affected for years after holding down her dungarees and molesting her, having cornered her in a toilet.

  1. Predatory Plymouth paedophile Sandy Cosburn fails to cut sentence

    Predatory Plymouth paedophile Sandy Cosburn fails to cut sentence

 

The sex offender was handed 43 months’ imprisonment after he admitted indecent assault after the start of his trial at Plymouth Crown Court in May last year.

Three top judges at London’s Appeal Court have now rejected a sentence challenge by Cosburn, saying his punishment had to reflect “the harm done to his victim”.

Mr Justice Simon said Cosburn carried out the attack almost three decades ago, while in his twenties, having lured the girl and other children to his Devonport home on the pretense of showing them his animals.

The girl went to the bathroom and removed her dungarees to go to the toilet when she noticed there was no lock on the door.

“Within a few seconds she could see through the frosted glass plate that someone was standing behind the door. She saw the handle start to move,” the appeal judge added.

Cosburn molested her for several minutes and then thanked her and called her a “good girl”.

The victim kept the abuse a secret for years but eventually told police in 2011.

“One does not have to imagine the effect of this assault on the victim,” the appeal judge said. “She has described in eloquent terms the long-term effect it has had on her.”

Cosburn, whose address was given as Kitter Drive, Staddiscombe, at an earlier court appearance, previously served two months for a similar assault on a young girl after appearing at the magistrates’ court in 1986. In 2005, he admitted sexually assaulting yet another girl in the 1980s and was jailed for three years.

Jailing him last year, Judge Francis Gilbert QC said Cosburn could have admitted the latest offence when receiving either of his previous sentences but chose to keep it quiet.

On appeal, Jo Martin, for Cosburn, today argued the sentence failed to reflect that this assault was part of an ongoing course of offending in the 1980s, for which he had already been substantially punished.

But Mr Justice Simon, sitting with Lady Justice Rafferty and Mrs Justice Carr, said Cosburn had, at the first sentencing hearing, unjustly received credit for his good character when he was, in fact, a “practising, predatory paedophile”.

He concluded: “Here, the sentencing judge plainly had in mind the sentences for the earlier offending.

“The issue before the court is whether the sentence of 43 months was manifestly excessive in light of the earlier sentences.

“Despite the eloquent submissions of Ms Martin, our view is that it was not. Indeed, any significant reduction would not take a full account of the culpability of Cosburn and the harm that was done to his victim.

“Accordingly, the appeal is dismissed.”
This is plymouth

Plymouth paedophile who abused boy 100 times in a year jailed for almost four years

Published April 27, 2013 by JS2

A MAN who performed an indecent act on a boy more than a hundred times in a year has been jailed.

David Parker, aged 51, had denied six specimen counts of sexual activity with a child but was found guilty after a trial.

 
  1. Plymouth paedophile who abused boy 100 times in a year David Parker jailed for almost four years

    Plymouth paedophile who abused boy 100 times in a year David Parker jailed for almost four years

A jury decided he had indecently touched the boy on different occasions between March 2009 and March 2010.

Parker, of Glenmore Avenue in Stoke, was also convicted of making indecent pictures of children on various dates between 2005 and 2010.

Parker, a former accounts manager at a bank, was also convicted of two charges of possession of indecent images of a child in July 2010.

Judge Paul Darlow, sitting at Plymouth Crown Court, jailed him for a total of three years and nine months.

The judge said: “I have read statements from the victim and his mother and I understand how they feel.”

He said Parker had groomed his victim for sexual abuse over some time.

The boy, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, told the jury that the abuse went on for several months – but he did not tell his mother because she thought she might be angry with him.

During the three day trial, Plymouth Crown Court heard the boy claim Parker performed an indecent act on him more than 100 times.

The court also heard from another man at the trial who said that Parker made indecent suggestions towards him when he was a youth.

He refused to comply.

Iain White, for the Crown Prosecution Service, told the sentencing hearing that Parker had more than 100 indecent Level 1 images of children on his computer.

He had 30 pictures at Level 2 and 15 images at Level 4. Level 1 images are the least serious while Level 5 are the most depraved.

Mr White said he had a caution for an offence in 2003.

Nigel Hall, for Parker, said there was little mitigation he could offer because Parker had denied the offences.

Judge Darlow also imposed an indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order which restricts Parker’s unrestricted contact with young people.

This is Plymouth

Plymouth paedophile Lee Murphy jailed for three years

Published April 16, 2013 by JS2

A MAN who sexually abused three children over a decade has been jailed for three years.

Lee Murphy appearing on his 31st birthday, was sent to prison from Plymouth Crown Court.

 
  1. Plymouth paedophile Lee Murphy jailed for three years

    Plymouth paedophile Lee Murphy jailed for three years

     

He had denied indecently assaulting two boys and a girl in the city between 1995 and 2005.

But Murphy was found guilty by a jury of four offences last month.

Judge Paul Darlow told him: “You have an ongoing sexual interest in prepubescent children.”

Murphy barely reacted as he was led away, but there were tears from family supporters at the back of court.

Murphy, a former nursing student and stepfather to four children was convicted of one offence of indecently assaulting a girl under the age of 14 and two specimen charges of indecently assaulting a boy under 14.

Murphy was also found guilty of another charge of sexually touching a boy under the same age.

Murphy, of North Road West, touched the three victims indecently in bed as they were asleep or watching films.

None of them told anyone about what had happened until two years ago.

Malcolm Clarke, for Murphy, said that the defendant himself was only 13 or 14 at the time of the first offence.

He said he continued to plead his innocence, but accepted the verdict of the jury.

Mr Clarke handed in several references to his good character.

He added the defendant had hoped to go into teaching or work in a care home, but now accepted that would not happen.

The court heard he had also spent 15 years in the St John Ambulance.

The offences are not connected to his stepchildren nor his time with the St John Ambulance.

Murphy married a Filipino nurse with four children in 2006.

this is plymouth

Paedophile caught looking at children’s feet online, Plymouth court told

Published April 8, 2013 by JS2

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A DANGEROUS paedophile has been put back behind bars after accessing a website showing children’s feet.

Barry Holland, aged 32, was banned from looking at pictures of youngsters on the internet, Plymouth Crown Court heard.

But police officers who searched his room at a city hostel found notes with website addresses which led them to fetish sites featuring children.

Holland admitted obtaining sexual pleasure from looking at children’s feet.

He pleaded guilty to breaching a Sexual Offences Prevention Order on a date before September 12 last year.

The order was imposed in 2008 when he was jailed for an indefinite period for 15 child pornography offences.

His latest hearing was told he was released in August last year, only weeks before committing his latest crime.

Holland, of HMP Channings Wood near Newton Abbot, has been returned to his cell on licence and will only be freed when a parole board deems it safe – and not before the end of this year.

Jason Beal, for Holland, said the images he had viewed were “distasteful” but not indecent.

Judge Jeremy Griggs jailed him for nine months for the latest offence, to run alongside his licence period.

this is Plymouth

Plymouth teenager Brenan Grenney faces jail for raping schoolgirl

Published March 21, 2013 by JS2

A TEENAGER who raped a terrified schoolgirl after an evening of booze and drugs is today finally behind bars.

Brenan Grenney, aged 19, claimed he could not remember attacking the youngster because of the binge.

 
  1. BEHIND BARS: Brenan Grenney

     

     

The jury at a previous trial failed to reach a verdict and the victim was forced to endure a retrial.

But yesterday a new jury at Plymouth Crown Court saw through Grenney’s lies and convicted him of rape.

Judge Paul Darlow remanded him in custody for a probation officer to prepare a report on his background. He told him: “A sentence of custody is merely inevitable.”

The officer in the case said after the verdict that the victim had been in “limbo” since she was attacked more than 18 months ago.

Detective Constable Simon Rawlinson, of the Sexual Offences Investigation Team, said: “This result has been a long time coming. She has finally received justice and can move on with her life.

“With this result and the support of the police sexual liaison officer, PC Anni Parr, and counselling from Twelves Company, she and her family finally have closure on this part of her life.”

The brave young victim had faced the trauma of giving evidence at two trials after the first jury failed to agree its verdict earlier this month.

A second jury of nine men and three women took about two hours and 20 minutes to unanimously convict Grenney.

The smartly-dressed defendant barely reacted as the foreman announced he was guilty.

He had denied rape but pleaded guilty to the alternative charge of sexual activity with a child under the age of 16.

Grenney, of Embankment Road, was remanded in custody until April 26.

He had refused to take to the stand and no evidence was called on his behalf.

But the jury heard he told police in interview that the night of August 16, 2011, was a “bit of a blank”.

The court heard he had lost three to four hours of his memory between drinking and smoking cannabis in a park to waking up in a city flat after the incident.

But the victim told the court he seemed only “tipsy” that night, when the British Fireworks Championships were taking place.

The schoolgirl wiped away the tears as she answered questions over a live videolink.

She had told police that she was “constantly screaming no” as Grenney made sexual advances.

She said Grenney had locked the door of the city home where they were alone.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said that Grenney held his arm over her mouth and hit her once during a half-hour ordeal.

this is plymouth