A Canberra man molesting his nieces when they were only three years old, wrote a letter ten years later in which he said God had forgiven him, a court heard.
Most important points:
- The man abused the girls in the seventies and eighties
- He later wrote a letter stating that he was forgiven by God
- He was imprisoned for 10 years and only qualifies for a conditional release in 2024
Today, the 70-year-old man was sentenced in the Supreme Court of ACT to 10 years in prison for six offenses, ranging from carnal knowledge to indecent people.
The court heard that some of the crimes were committed when the man put the girls to bed while being careful between 1979 and the mid-1980s.
The court heard that the man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of his victims, had been a decorated Vietnam veteran and had been supported by at least one brother or sister during the trial who had told the court that she was surprised about the allegations.
An author of the prescription report noted that the man seemed to have a "positive" life and had never got into trouble with the law.
But they also said it was significant that the man did not seem to take responsibility for the violations and believed that he had been the victim of vexatious accusations.
The court heard the family members confront him for the first time with the crimes in the 1990s, but it was not until 2014 that he was informed that the police were conducting a formal investigation.
Judge Chrissa Loukas-Karlsson noted that prosecutors admitted that the long time between his crimes and the accusations should have been taken into account, but has also considered some mitigating problems.
"The Prosecution argued that there is no evidence that he has had tension or uncertainty about whether the authorities would take action," she said.
"The Prosecution has also argued that the letters he wrote to the victims in the 1990s show that he is at peace with his insult due to his insult for forgiveness of God."
Justice Loukas Karlson also mentioned the devastating effect the events had on the victim's life, addressing the man directly.
"Young children cannot protect themselves," she said.
"Your young nieces were unable to protect themselves.
"This was a gross violation of trust."
The man was imprisoned for 10 years, with a non-pooling period of six years, and is not eligible for release until 2024.
judge and trial,