Sex-offending teacher draws complaints

JAMES GREENLAND
Last updated 15:40 20/01/2014
Lawrence Shaw
GUILTY: Lawrence Shaw was sentenced to 2 years, 3 months in prison for indecently assaulting five girls.

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Nelson police have received a Christchurch complaint about a former Nelson teacher following his jailing for sex offences against children.

Lawrence Shaw, 44, was sentenced to two years and three months in prison last week after being found guilty of indecently assaulting five school-aged girls.

Judge Tony Zohrab described it as "opportunistic sexual offending against children in a public place".

Detective Constable Steve Arnold, of Nelson, said outside court that police were appalled by Shaw's "abuse of trust".

While none of the five complainants at trial were Shaw's students, he had been a teacher in Nelson, Marlborough and Canterbury for the past 20 years, he said. This put him in a "position of responsibility over other people's young children".

Arnold said he expected more victims of Shaw's opportunistic offending to come forward following reports of his conviction.

He invited anyone with concerns to call him on 03 970 2163.

They could also make an anonymous report to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, he said.

Nelson police communications spokeswoman Barbara Dunn confirmed that at least one of the two complaints would "definitely" be investigated.

But because the investigation was active, she was unable to give details.

Dunn said another complaint was made by someone in Christchurch, where Shaw taught for a time, but it was ''too early to say'' what would come of it.

Arnold said there was potential for further prosecutions, ''but there is a lot of work to do before we will know about that''.

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