September 1997

Fury of child abuse victim

A BOLTON man says he feels “devastated and let down” after watching the sex beast he claims abused him as a child being sentenced to 12 years in jail.

Noel Ryan, aged 66, admitted 14 charges of sex abuse on boys in his care at a residential special school in North Wales.

But the Bolton man who says he was abused after being referred to Clywd Hall in the 1970s where Ryan worked as a house parent said: “He was evil and should have got life.”

The man who wants to be identified only by his first name – Terry – sat in the public gallery at Chester Crown Court wearing a T-shirt bearing the slogan “used and abused by paedophiles”.

Terry came to Britain as child in the 1970s when his family fled sectarian violence in Northern Ireland. He was referred to various homes across the country because of behavioural problems and says he was abused in Bolton, North Wales and Shropshire.

He is now calling for a detailed national inquiry into care homes.

He says he was abused regularly by Ryan and said: “Ryan has destroyed my life and he will be out of jail in about nine years.

“It makes me sick that some people have said there should be consideration to the age of these paedophiles when they are sentenced. They didn’t consider our ages when they raped us.

“I’m 31 years old and my life is over. I have scars all over my body where I have tried to hurt myself and I’m a heavy drinker and it’s all down to him. “Something has to be done about these paedophiles. I have had enough of this system. You get more for attacks on property than you do for wrecking people’s lives.”

Ryan had committed a grave sexual offence on three occasions on one boy, attempted the offence on another, and also admitted 10 indecent assaults against various boys.

He became besotted with one boy who had been abused for more than three years. The boy had recalled: “He was almost a father-figure and I did as I was told.”

Patrick Harrington QC representing Ryan said there was a defect in Ryan’s make-up and he had succumbed to temptation. He was remorseful, prepared to take his punishment, and more sorry for the victims than for himself.

The abuse ended more than 16 years ago. Ryan himself had been abused as a child.

Judge Morgan Hughes described it as an extremely grave case and a colossal breach of trust.

He added: “You were in a position of authority over very vulnerable children, children sent to that school because of the unhappiness and difficulties of their home backgrounds.”