June 2021

Love note paedophile finally faces justice nearly two decades later

A predatory paedophile has been handed a long prison term following his conviction for the sexual touching of a young girl.

Edward Coleman, 44, abused the girl nearly 20 years ago and then sent her love notes years later.

Coleman, now of Surrey, was convicted following a trial at Truro Crown Court of three sexual assaults of a girl under 13, assault by penetration and five counts of sexual activity with a child.

Prosecuting the case, Heather Hope told the jury that it involves touching of the chest and genitals, digital penetration, oral sex and imitating sex acts, offences committed in the St Austell area.

Miss Hope said that during some of the abuse the defendant “smelt of alcohol” and that the complainant would try to get away when Coleman tried to get her to masturbate him.

Miss Hope went on to graphically describe how Coleman sexually abused the victim.

Miss Hope said the abuse eventually came to an end when the complainant stood up to Coleman, although he continued to photograph her and continue to express an interest in her.

Coleman later sent the complainant Facebook messages which included hearts carved into trees with their initials and suggested they spent a night together in Newquay.

The abuse was eventually reported when the complainant spoke to a woman in a pub before finding the courage to tell her partner, mother and then the police.

On behalf of Coleman, Ed Bailey said he was an otherwise decent, hard working man who worked mainly as a lorry driver. Coleman was said to be in bad health and someone who has made significant charitable donations.

Sentencing Coleman, Judge Robert Linford said he perpetrated years of abuse on the victim.

Coleman was jailed for 10 years with a further year to be served on licence after release.