May 2009

Barry busker’s paedophile past is exposed

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A MAN who dresses as an elf to busk in towns including Barry has been exposed as a convicted paedophile.

Gerald Game, aged 50, from Chepstow, was given a 21-month-sentence in 1993 for grooming a 13-year-old girl and abusing her for seven years.

A national newspaper that exposed Game said he worked in Cheltenham – but many Barry residents have recognised him as the busking elf who sits with his musical instruments and fancy dress outside Iceland in Holton Road.

One man, known as Jumpinjamie, posted the following on the paper’s website: “This monster has been seen in Barry, South Wales on a number of occasions and my five-year-old son has spoken to him and shaken his hand while putting pennies into his busking pot.

“I am sickened at this and how we can all be fooled. I dread to think what I’d say to this monster if I see him again.”

Another called Sammy1984 posted: “This is the man who plays in my town centre in Barry. I think this man should not be allowed to perform on our streets as he does encourage children to play along with him by handing them instruments to play.”

Miss B09 added: “I saw this man last week in Barry town centre in Wales. He was playing his recorder, and had tambourines on the floor and a little boy went up and sat by him.

“I was with my three-and-a-half-year-old son at the time, and it makes me sick to think of this man being able to perform in the street, luring children to him with his instruments that they can play with. He is a paedophile!”

Those questioned on the streets of Barry were horrified by the news.

Mum of three Kay Coomber, 32, of Holton Road, said: “I have seen him here in the town and it is worrying. Surely there should be rules about him busking.”

Danielle Rowlands, 27, added: “When you dress like that you are doing it to attract children, there are no two ways about it.

“It makes you suspicious of everyone – if he has been convicted how is he allowed to dress up like that on streets? I don’t understand.”

A spokesman from South Wales Police said: “Every police force has safeguards in place to deal with known sex offenders.

“The police work in partnership and draw up protocols with various agencies to monitor these offenders effectively.

“Although no guarantees can be made about an offender’s future actions, the public is far better protected where an offender is in stable accommodation, closely monitored by specialist police officers who ensure offenders comply with any conditions that may apply.”