Child molester jailed for five years

IAN CLARKE A former carpenter who fled the country for 22 years after sexually abusing four young girls has been jailed for five years.Norwich Crown Court heard harrowing accounts of the devastating long-term impact the offences committed by Peter Bruton, 54, has had on his victims who were aged between five and 15 at the time.

IAN CLARKE

A former carpenter who fled the country for 22 years after sexually abusing four young girls has been jailed for five years.

Norwich Crown Court heard harrowing accounts of the devastating long-term impact the offences committed by Peter Bruton, 54, has had on his victims who were aged between five and 15 at the time.

The emotional scars have led to suicide attempts, self harming, severe depression and an inability to have sexual relationships.

Two of the victims were in court to see Bruton jailed but the other two were too upset to attend.

The court was told Bruton was arrested in 1984 after two of the girls made allegations against him. But after his first court appearance he fled Britain and went to France and then America.

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He only returned last September and two of the victims' families realised he was back and informed the police.

The other two victims were then tracked down by officers and gave statements.

Bruton, of Howell Road, Norwich, admitted 12 offences during the late 1970s and early 80s.

Judge Simon Barham imposed a 10 year sexual offences prevention order which severely limits Bruton's movements.

He will also be on the sex offenders' register for an indefinite period.

Duncan O'Donnell, prosecuting, said Bruton had put his victims in fear by telling them they would be taken away from their families if they reported what he had done to them and so they kept quiet.

On one occasion one of the terrified girls said: “Stop.” But Bruton told her: “Do not be so boring. I am only playing.”

In her impact statement one of the victims said: “He spent all his life telling lies to cover up his dirty secrets.”

Michael Clare, mitigating, asked the judge to give him credit for pleading guilty and avoiding a trial.

After the case Det Con Gill Embling, of Norfolk Police's Child Protection Unit, paid tribute to the bravery of the victims.

“This case sends out a positive message to all victims of such devastating crimes that no matter how much time has passed they will be treated sensitively and their case will be rigorously investigated.

“It should also serve as a warning to those who commit these heinous offences that they will be tracked down and be brought to justice wherever there is sufficient evidence to do so.”