Cricket umpire groomed poor boys for sex acts

A former first-class cricket umpire who cruised the streets of South Auckland seducing impoverished Pacific Island boys into gay prostitution will be jailed.

Ian William Shine umpired national-level top-flight cricket until about 2006 and worked as a battery salesman at South Auckland's HCB Technologies.

In his HCB sales van, though, he prowled the streets of South Auckland, befriending boys from low-income families and offering cash to perform oral sex on them.

Shine, 58, pleaded guilty in the High Court at Auckland on Wednesday to crimes against 12 boys, stretching back to 2003.

He pleaded guilty to 24 charges - a charge of sexual connection with a young person for each of the 12 boys and a charge of entering a contract for sex with a person under 18 for each.

His victims, all Polynesian males from lower socio-economic backgrounds, ranged in age from 11 to 18.

Police said he had "systematically groomed" the boys since 2003.

He paid the younger ones $2 or $3 per episode and some of the older ones received up to hundreds of dollars.

He flew one of the boys to Wellington in 2005 and had him wait in his hotel room for him while he attended a national cricketing awards ceremony.

Shine's Cricket Archive profile lists a host of assignments at New Zealand State Championship level, and women's and youth international level.

His profile ends in March 2006 with two matches he umpired in South Africa.

The court heard he began his prowling in the streets around Onehunga High School in 2003.

He gave a boy a ride home and paid him $20 for oral sex.

Shine seduced another boy by throwing a handful of cash in his lap and saying: "I want what's under that money."

He would take the boys to secluded parks, abandoned houses or his own home when his wife was not around.

Three of the victims were brothers and cousins. He befriended the family by giving them groceries and cash.

The court was told he made sure to give his youngest victims only $2 or $5 so their parents would not be suspicious of them turning up with large sums of money.

South Auckland Pacific Island support workers said they had heard tales of male prostitution for some years.

A social worker at a Manurewa trust for Pacific youth said she heard rumours about child prostitution, an issue she talked about at her parenting clinics.

Parents were taught to watch for their children suddenly possessing quantities of money, she said.

Another social worker at a social services provider in Papatoetoe said there were well-known spots where "poofters" paid young people for sex.

She had been urged by people in the community to expose the customers by taking a camera to some of the parks.

When Shine's house was raided by police, they found a number of batteries stolen from his workplace valued at $14,000.

New Zealand Cricket national umpire manager Roger McHarg said he knew of Shine but Shine had not umpired for some years.

Shine was remanded in custody for sentencing on September 25.

Sunday Star Times