August 2013

Piano teacher jailed for 18 years for raping girl pupil


A paedophile piano teacher who acted out his sexual fetishes on a gifted young music pupil he systematically raped and abused has been jailed for 18 years.

Church organist Andrew Pearson, who hid his obsession with pornography from the world, began grooming the vulnerable child when she was eight and went on to molest her hundreds of times over four years.

Pearson, 37, of Bronte Old Road,Thornton, Bradford, stood impassively in the dock at Bradford Crown Court yesterday as the jury found him guilty of eight offences of child rape and six of sexual abuse.

He was cleared of one offence of sexual assault.

Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said Pearson was found guilty on “the most compelling evidence” in one of the worst cases of its kind.

Andrew Pearson1

In a victim statement read to the court, the girl said: “I just want to be able to forget, but I don’t think I will be able to do that.”

Pearson, an account manager for Yorkshire Water, was described in court as a talented musician, trained to Grade Seven standard. The judge said he had appeared to be of exemplary standing and character.

“Nobody knew that you have a deep seated and general obsession with the sexual activities of girls who were, or looked as though they were, under age,” he told him.

The jury heard that 74,000 pornographic images and 5,000 videos were found on Pearson’s computers.

Judge Durham Hall said they featured young women “engaged in a bewildering variety of activities at the hands of older men.”

Pearson had a fetish for soiled ladies underwear, the court was told. His estranged wife had found a pair of small pink knickers in his drawer and pornography on a memory stick.

Judge Durham Hall said the girl’s family trusted him.

“They were giving their child into the hands of a very predatory, manipulative and deceiving paedophile.

“It was protracted, detailed, repeated abuse on a little girl who could not and did not understand and was ashamed, terrified, afraid to complain, afraid of you,” the judge said.

Pearson showed her pornography to groom, seduce and corrupt her. He made her strip and abused her in the music room and bedroom.

“You clearly are a most wicked man,” Judge Durham Hall said.

The impact on Pearson’s victim was incalculable. She was scarred for life.

Pearson was given a 22-year extended sentence, with 18 years in jail with four on licence.

After the case, the girl’s family said: “We are grateful to the Crown Prosecution Service and the police for their help and support throughout this terrible time. We are relieved that these truly horrific crimes have been recognised.”

Officer in the case, PC Naomi Brown, said: “I would like to thank the victim for her bravery and courage in coming forward to report such heinous crimes. This sentence correctly reflects the seriousness of what Pearson did to this vulnerable child. I would encourage other victims of such crimes to come forward and report these offences.”