Sexual assault spied, stopped by public

BELINDA FEEK
Last updated 05:00 18/12/2012

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A Hamilton pensioner has been sentenced to preventive detention for repeatedly sexually violating a 12-year-old boy - just after being released from prison for similar offences.

Robert Vernon Adams, 70, could be kept in prison indefinitely if he is deemed to still be a risk to the public.

However, he must serve at least five years in prison before being considered for release.

Adams, who was sentenced at the High Court in Hamilton, had earlier admitted eight charges of sexual violation and indecent assault of the boy along with 19 representative charges of possessing objectionable material.

Those charges relate to police searching Adams' house on November 28 last year, when they took computers, external hard drives and electronic equipment from his vehicle.

Adams' sentencing was late last week.

In total, police found 1120 objectionable images of boys being photographed in a sexual nature.

It was members of the public who eventually brought Adams to police attention, after they noticed him acting suspiciously with the victim at a Hamilton car park on November 25, 2011.

The victim had been taken to the park by Adams to play touch rugby but was injured and returned to the vehicle, where Adams sexually assaulted him.

The victim tried to get away but was told not to by Adams.

Members of the public noticed Adams' behaviour, confronting him while removing the victim from his car while they called police.

Adams told them he was the victim's godfather, then later said that he was his adopted grandfather.

Police then discovered the incident was not a one-off.

After they interviewed the victim, it was revealed he had known Adams for six months and on other occasions had been forced to do other indecent acts.

Crown prosecutor Rebecca Mann said it was clear from reports from both a psychologist and psychiatrist that Adams was still at a medium to high risk of reoffending.

Mrs Mann said Adams' earlier offending - against a 12-year-old boy who he befriended over a year - was also aggravating.

Justice Lang said he was concerned by the specialists' reports which showed that Adams laid some blame on the victim, as well as his childhood.

One report showed Adams' early sexual experience with a woman led to him being punished.

From that point on, his sexual preference was men. He has been a practising homosexual for years, having about 10 partners during his life, but none long term.

The offending had a dramatic effect on the victim and his parents, who blamed themselves for what happened.

"They should not feel for any second any shame for what happened. You portrayed yourself that you could be trusted," Justice Lang told Adams.

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"You are the person who betrayed their trust. The victim should not feel any shame or responsibility. That rests solely with you."

- Waikato Times

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