Paedophile principal abandons sentence appeal

Former principal and convicted paedophile Bruce Darroch has abandoned his appeal.
BENN BATHGATE/FAIRFAX NZ

Former principal and convicted paedophile Bruce Darroch has abandoned his appeal.

Former school principal and convicted paedophile Bruce Darroch has abandoned plans to appeal his two-and-a-half year prison sentence.

The mother of one of Darroch's victims - who cannot be named to protect the identity of her child - said she felt relief at the news.

"The stress that was building up for us was huge," she said.

"It's been rather traumatic preparing ourselves mentally for the appeal and it certainly is a relief. . . this at least brings some peace that the sicko is going to stay locked up where he belongs for his sentence."

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Darroch's lawyer Russell Fairbrother QC said he was unable to comment on the decision to abandon the appeal, originally scheduled for October 18.

When it was revealed last week that Darroch planned to launch an appeal the mother said the news left her feeling "sickened".

"Darroch is still in denial of his guilt which shows how dangerous he actually is," she said. 

Darroch, the former principal of Te Waotu School in Putaruru, received the prison sentence on June 24 this year after being found guilty in March of possession of objectionable material, making an objectionable publication and failing to assist a police search.

The failure to assist charges related to a number of electronic devices and Darroch's refusal to provide passwords to allow Police access to the stored data.

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He also possessed a number of objectionable photographs and videos and had supplied photos of children at his school to paedophiles online.

While the school photos were not classed as objectionable in themselves, they were accompanied by stories Darroch had written.

At sentencing Judge Tony Snell rejected Darroch's claims the school photos had been shared as part of work on a school website.

"[The stories contained] sexual abuse, including bondage and punishment which you would like to do given the opportunity. . . disturbingly, a number of these images were of pupils at your school," he said.

"It talks about rape and the detention of children, accompanied by photos of children, real children from your school."

Snell also referred to a number of objectionable images found in Darroch's possession: "naked children, mostly male, often exposing their genitalia".

One image, too graphic to describe, Snell called "clearly a sadistic photograph".

He was found not guilty of two charges of supplying objectionable material. 

 

 - Stuff

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