95yo to be sentenced over sex assault on granddaughter

One of the state’s oldest convicted paedophiles will be sentenced Friday over the sexual assault of his granddaughter in Eden in the early 1990s.

Bega District Court heard on Wednesday the 95-year-old Victorian man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, told police his granddaughter was a “little sex pot” from the age of just three, who was “acting like a stripper” and the abuse would “bring an end to her ongoing flirting”.

The man sat still in the dock as his victim told the court of her ongoing nightmares, flashbacks and depression suffered since her abuse at the age of just 12.

“I’m ashamed of what happened to me,” she told the court as she read from her victim impact statement.

The man had pleaded guilty to the aggravated sexual assault of a victim under the age of 16 in local court earlier this year. 

He was arrested in August 2017, 26 years after the offence took place in a camper van while the victim was on holiday and alone with her grandfather.

The Crown prosecution told Acting Judge Greg Grogin the man, who lived in Eden at the time of the offence, had “engaged in victim blaming”, accusing her of being “the instigator”, and telling police it was “her fault” he “fell for the trap”.

“I thought it would give her something so she would stop harassing me,” the man also told police after his arrest, the court heard.

Prosecutors told the court the man should be jailed over the abuse, as “age is not a licence to commit sexual offences”.

They told the court the “victim feels punished for what happened to her”, as she felt forced to keep the abuse secret, and that the man’s admitted sense of regret should not be considered by the court as remorse.

The Crown refuted the defence’s claim the man is of “good character”, as he had admitted to sexually abusing his granddaughter.

“There’s a very big breach of trust,” Acting Judge Grogin said.

The man’s defence barrister told the court, while his client had led a “blameless life” he had committed a “serious offence”, and that jail would be “tantamount to a life sentence” due to his age.

A NSW Police spokesperson said as far as they are aware, the man will be oldest child sex offender to be sentenced in the state.

He will be sentenced in Bega District Court on Friday, September 14.