Abuse victim's family split over complaint

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 05:00 12/07/2014

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Bringing a Taranaki man to justice has split a woman's family.

He was yesterday jailed for seven years for sexually abusing her over many years from the time she was four.

In May, Shane Allen, 67, was found guilty of five counts of unlawful sexual connection and indecent assault of the girl during a seven- year period.

The New Plymouth District Court jury returned with unanimous guilty verdicts to all charges, some of which were representative of prolonged abuse.

As a victim of sexual abuse, the woman, now aged 24, has automatic name suppression.

The trial was told her family had tried to stop her from making a complaint to police when she was younger.

Outside court Crown prosecutor Justin Marinovich praised the complainant in bringing the case to court. "The victim is a strong young lady coming forward knowing the process has divided her family and isolated her from them."

The jury took just two hours to return with its verdicts endorsing the Crown case that Allen, between 1994 and 2002, sexually assaulted the girl at night when she was in bed at a rural North Taranaki home.

He also abused her when the girl went to his shed where he would make her toys, when he took her for a ride on his four-wheel motorbike to the back of the farm, and again when she was in his car at night and he was driving a sleeping woman home from a Waitara party.

The defendant was first spoken to by police in 2004 when Allen denied any offending and he refused to give police a statement last year.

Allen's lawyer, Paul Keegan, said outside court that Allen would be appealing his conviction.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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