January 2012

Paedophile gets six years in jail

A SCARBOROUGH man has been jailed for more than six years after he admitted to engaging in sexual activity with a young child.

Duncan James Byrne, 34, of North Marine Road, committed the “obnoxious” offences in Scarborough between March and April last year.

He had initially denied three charges before he changed his pleas and admitted to the crimes.

York Crown Court heard yesterday that Byrne’s offending had come to light after the child had managed to tell her mother what was going on.

Prosecutor Sarah Mallett said that Byrne had warned the child not to tell her mother about the offences.

Judge Stephen Ashurst, the recorder of York, ordered Byrne to sign the sex offenders’ register for life and banned him indefinitely from working with children, as well as jailing him for six years and six months.

Judge Ashurst said the three charges were only a representation of a larger number of sexual assaults which Byrne had subjected his victim to.

The court also heard that Byrne was considered a “high risk” to children.

Following the hearing, DC Laura Carroll, of North Yorkshire Police’s protecting vulnerable persons unit, described Byrne’s actions as “abhorrent and beneath contempt”.

She added: “I would like to highlight the bravery which the victim and their family have displayed since their lives were turned upside down by Byrne.

“Duncan Byrne has admitted that he is a child sex offender and that, together with the consequences he now faces, will follow him around for the rest of his life.

“I hope today’s outcome gives other victims of sexual abuse the confidence to come forward and report their ordeal to the police.”

After Byrne was arrested, he denied the offences and attempted to blame others in a police interview, the court was told.

A trial had been set to take place in October before Byrne’s guilty pleas.

Tom Storey, who represented Byrne, said his client had realised he needed help and was willing to work closely with the probation service and other authorities.