Man, 77, on Sex Charges

Adelaide Now
August 24, 2008,22606,24231842-2682,00.html

POLICE have charged an Oaklands Park man, 77, with numerous sex offences in connection with the abuse of young boys who were wards of the state.

The offending allegedly occurred from the early 1960s to the late 1970s at the Glandore and Somerton Park boys' homes, where the man was employed.

The victims, aged between eight and 13 at the time, gave evidence to the Mullighan inquiry.

In the Children in State Care Inquiry report tabled in April, Commissioner Ted Mullighan detailed the extent of the abuse at the two homes in 11 pages of evidence and individual case studies.

Many of the cases were referred to the Pedophile Task Force for investigation, with detectives concluding their investigations earlier this month.

Last week the man was charged with three counts of buggery, one count of attempted buggery and six counts of indecent assault. He has been given police bail and is due to appear in Adelaide Magistrates Court in November.

His arrest is the latest in a series for historical sex offences made by task force detectives this month.

The others include:

A FORMER Anglican priest, 73, charged with indecent assault and unlawful sexual intercourse in the 1970s.

A MAN, 62, charged with buggery and indecent assault of two boys aged 11 years in the 1970s.

A MAN, 68, charged with the sexual assault of wards of the state at Slade Cottage in the late 1970s.

A MAN, 55, charged with buggery and unlawful sexual intercourse with boys aged between 12 and 14 in the 1970s.

A FORMER television personality, 79, charged with buggery, rape and unlawful sexual intercourse involving boys aged between 12 and 14 in the 1970s.

PTF Detective-Inspector Mark Trenwith said yesterday there were 170 cases referred from the Mullighan inquiry being investigated.

The Director of Public Prosecutions was considering a further four cases and there were already more than 20 before the courts.

Insp Trenwith said the investigation of all historical sex offences was "demanding and complex".

"They are difficult because we are dealing with, in some cases, events that have occurred up to 50 years ago," he said.

"Witnesses' memories are incomplete in some circumstances and the investigations are sometimes complicated by the fact records have often been destroyed or are difficult to locate."

While the matters were difficult to investigate, he said they were treated no differently than contemporary offences.

"The PTF has a mandate to fully investigate these matters and provide victims with the appropriate levels of service," he said.

"Victims can be assured that their matters will be thoroughly investigated and, where possible, the matters will be put before the courts.

"Most of the victims are aware these are difficult matters to prosecute and we keep in constant touch with them.

"While they are difficult, we have had a number of significant convictions from these types of investigations."

Insp Trenwith said a significant number of sex offences now being reported to police were historical.

"Added to the publicity surrounding the Mullighan inquiry, and because of the convictions we have achieved, there is a renewed confidence in the community victims can come forward with allegations of historical abuse," he said.

"People realise it will be properly investigated and may end up with a conviction. We would urge anyone who has any information concerning historical sex abuse to come and speak to us."


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