March 2015

Convicted murderer & friend admit sexually abusing young boys in care


A convicted killer who is serving a life sentence for bludgeoning a war veteran to death has returned to court after admitting raping and sexually abusing boys he met in the care system.

Stuart Young, 28, formerly of Broadgate, Preston, was sentenced to life with a minimum tariff of 28 years after he attacked Albert Fielding with a hammer, smashing his skull, and stole £160 from the 89-year-old’s wallet.

Now it has emerged Young, who spent time in a number of care settings as a child, targeted vulnerable boys raping one upwards of 30 times over a three year period when the boy was aged between 10 and 13 years old.

Another man, Brendan Wharton, 29, who met Young in foster care, also admitted taking part in sexual assaults after starting a relationship with Young when they were both teenagers.

The allegations came to light in April last year when one of the four victims told a social worker about sexual abuse he had experienced at a care home in Lancashire.

In the course of the police investigation, White was arrested and put forward the names of a number of other boys he remembered.

Young was also arrested but made no comment when he was questioned about the abuse.

A total of four men said they had been abused by the pair – one man saying Young had raped him repeatedly, and another saying Young had attempted to rape him. One said he had been indecently assaulted by Wharton alone and two that both men had abused him.

The boys were as young as nine years old when they were subjected to their ordeals.

Preston Crown Court heard Young had difficulties as a young child and had a lack of role models and nurture, which led to an unstable adult life with drug abuse culminating in the murder of Mr Fielding in 2011.

Wharton, the court heard, had a confused sexual identity and described Young as “evil” and a “vicious lad”.

Judge Anthony Russell QC, sentencing, said: “You are now in your case Young, 27, and in your case Wharton, 28. These offences occurred when you were very much younger – around the ages of in your case Young, 12 to 16 years and in your case Wharton when you were about a year older until you were 15.

“It is clear from the victim impact statement that (the first man to come forward) suffered psychological consequences which have left him feeling damaged. No doubt that is the case with the other boys as well.

“You Young appeared in front of me two years ago for an offence of murder – a terrible case – and you are serving a minimum term of 28 years.

“You acknowledge your involvement and I take into consideration your lack of maturity when these offences were committed.

“Brendan Wharton, there is no doubt you have led a blameless life since these offences were committed but you must have realised at the time that what you were doing was wrong.

“This was not an isolated incident – there were three different victims in your case. I accept your involvement was less than that of Young and I accept that at the time your sexual identity was confused.”

Young, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to rape and indecent assault of one boy, attempted rape and indecent assault of another boy, and indecent assault of a third boy.

Wharton admitted indecently assaulting three boys and both defendants admitted sexual activity in the presence of a child.

Young was jailed for four years, which will run concurrently to his existing life sentence but will be taken into account by the parole board when he is eligible to apply for release.

Wharton, of Broadfields, Chorley. was jailed for 16 months.