Accused may have more victims, police say

A former scout leader accused of sexually assaulting boys over a thirty year period may have more victims and police urge them to come forward.

Since a 61-year-old man was initially charged with 11 counts of indecent assault on Friday, investigators have spoken to another three victims, field crime manager, acting Detective Inspector Mark Greene, said.

"These matters are currently before the courts so we don't want to interfere with the integrity of the case, but we believe there may be more victims we've yet to identify,'' Greene said.

"The alleged offending took place between the early 1980s and 2012. The alleged offender was a district scout leader between 1976 and 1983 and has been a youth search and rescue co-ordinator holding positions of influence over teenagers aged 14-18 years."

Police want to hear from anyone who may have been subject to inappropriate advances over this time period or from parents whose children may have exhibited behaviours of concern.

"Both organisations are aware of the allegations and are cooperating fully with our investigations. Police are also continuing to work with them to improve processes around vetting of personnel and early identification of potential victims to prevent similar incidents from occurring.

"Incidents such as this are very disappointing, when reflecting on the good these organisations do for our communities and youth, and the impact such revelations may have. The most important thing remains, however, for us to identify any other potential victims and get them the support and care that they may need."

Anyone who believes they may have been subjected to inappropriate behaviour from the offender is asked to contact Detective Andrew Hawke of the Hamilton CIB on 07 858 6200

Waikato Times