June 2015

Anglican vicar jailed for abusing altar boy

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A former Anglican vicar has been found guilty of six counts of indecent assault including abusing an altar boy at a Church in Chiswick.

John Charles Hibberd, aged 77, was found guilty of six counts of indecent assault, the oldest offence dating back to 1967.

He has been jailed for a total of seven years and two months at Kingston Crown Court.

Hibberd worked for the Church of England in West London for many years. On 20 February 2013, one of his victims contacted the police to make aa allegation of sexual abuse by Hibberd dating back decades.

When he was younger he had lived in Chiswick with his family and was taken to a local church; St James, Gunnersbury by his mother from the ages of seven to eight years and attended until he was 12.

He became an altar boy and Hibberd targeted him for abuse. During the investigation, two other victims were identified and contacted by the police.

St. James was incorporated into the Parish of Brentford in 1987.

Hibberd retired to the Isle of Wight over 15 years ago and worked in churches and voluntary organisations on the island.

Another male victim disclosed that he attended the choir at St Martin’s Church, in West Drayton in 1967 as a child and then went on to attend the school partnered with the church.

He used to attend confirmation classes, and went around six or seven times where Hibberd sexually assaulted him.

Another male victim came forward and disclosed that he attended the Church choir at the same Church and went on to attend the school partnered with the Church between 1969 and 1970 where Hibberd attempted to sexually assault him.

Hibberd was arrested for all the allegations made to police and interviewed in the Isle of Wight.

He categorically denied all the offences put to him – and refused to admit any wrongdoing against the victims.