Former Norfolk PE teacher who taught in Gorleston and Hellesdon described as ‘clandestine sex offender’ and jailed for five years
- Credit: SIMON FINLAY
A former Norfolk PE teacher has been jailed for five years after being exposed as a 'clandestine sex offender' who abused pupils.
Glyn Jones taught at two high schools in the county before he moved to Australia, but was brought back to England for a trial at Norwich Crown Court.
The 57-year-old admitted seven counts of indecently assaulting girls under the age of 16 on the first day of his trial, and was sentenced to five years in prison on Tuesday.
Judge Anthony Bate, sentencing, said the charges related to six girls who were aged between 13 and 16 years old at the time of Jones's offending between 1976 and 1996.
During his career Jones taught at Lynn Grove High School in Gorleston, and Hellesdon High School, near Norwich, before he later moved to Australia.
Judge Bate said the offending ranged from kissing on the mouth to 'much more serious' offences, and that all but one of the victims were former pupils of Jones in Norfolk.
'Your victims were pupils at two Norfolk high schools where you taught physical education in the 1990s,' said Judge Bate.
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'Your misconduct towards them was a gross abuse of the trust placed in you by their parents, fellow members of staff and your employers.'
He said the 'enduring impact' on the women, who were 'molested in this way as young teenage girls', was made plain in their statements to the court.
'It is a telling reflection that one victim referred to you throughout as Mr Jones,' he said. 'She recalls how you made her feel special, complimented her on her sporting skill and appeared interested and cared about her.
'Such observations could be made about many fine teachers who have followed this honourable profession with distinction over the years.
'However, for you it was a charade and a device.
'Gaining in turn the trust of one victim and then other similarly aged girls was the means by which you went on to exploit and abuse that relationship in the several ways described by the prosecution.
'You relied on them to keep secret what you had done to them and they each bore that burden for many years, while you continued to lead an outwardly respectable life as a man of apparent good character.
'In fact, as a consequence of your pleas to this indictment, you had been a clandestine sex offender since the age of 19, when you were a trainee teacher at college in Plymouth.'
Jones, whose given address was in Upper Coomeera, a suburb on the Gold Coast of Australia in Queensland, near Brisbane, appeared in court dressed in a dark suit, white shirt and purple tie.
Judge Bate, jailing Jones for five years, told him: 'You will plainly never teach or be responsible for children ever again.'
The unshaven defendant, who has receding grey hair, spoke only to confirm his name and showed no reaction as he was led to the cells. His passport was handed in to the court.
Some of his victims were in court as he was jailed, and others watched from a videolink from outside the courtroom.
There has not been one day, since first disclosing the abuse to the police two and a half years ago, where I haven't thought about Glyn Jones and what he did to me. It's incredible how someone you haven't seen – or had any contact with – in more than 20 years can have such an effect on your life.
When I was 13 and 14 years old, I saw him as someone who was there to protect and educate me. He made me feel safe and secure. But what I didn't realise at the time was that he was actually grooming me. Grooming me until that point where he had enough control to make his move.
The realisation that I was a victim of child abuse was crippling. At the time I didn't see it as abuse and I didn't feel what was happening to me was wrong or hurtful. Yet more than two decades later I suddenly found myself feeling that abuse, feeling the betrayal and pain and worst of all – feeling the humiliation and shame that Glyn Jones has gifted me.
As an adult I have tortured myself as to why I didn't see it at the time. I was a bright young girl – how could I not see what he was doing to me?
I torture myself daily with questions such as – Why me? Did I do something wrong? Did I bring this on myself? Was it my fault? What made me the perfect victim?
But I was just a child. A young girl who trusted someone – someone who was in a position of trust - who used that position to manipulate me and make me his sexual fantasy.
I feel sick and dirty at the thought of that. I look back at my childhood and question the person I thought I was. I question whether the choices I have made since in life are because of the abuse and the need to make things feel normal again.
It took many years for me to find the confidence to tell the police what happened and for me this is not just about justice – this is about me being able to finally say that I may have accepted the abuse at 14 years old. I may not have realised how wrong it was then. But it's NOT OK and I want Glyn Jones to know that I know what he did to me is wrong and I do not accept it.
There are certain songs I cannot hear on the radio without making me want to be sick. I have suffered with anxiety and depression periodically, leading to me to being diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I have had to have time off work as a result and I have been prescribed antidepressants. I have also been attending regular counselling sessions in order to try and unravel the web of confusion this ordeal has left me with.
By not entering a guilty plea at the earliest opportunity, Glyn Jones has effectively continued that abuse – adding to my distress.
Whilst I know that finally telling the police was the right thing to do – it has been an extremely distressing experience which has been drawn out over a longer period of time than has been necessary.
I am fortunate that I have an extremely supportive husband and family; however, it has been very upsetting for them to see me trying to cope with the ramifications.
I want to thank the police team for believing me and pursuing the investigation. When I first gave my statement, I knew I was going to open up an old wound but I did not realise how painful it would be - and whilst I know in time those wounds will heal, the scars from this will last my lifetime.
Det Con Kim Taylor who headed the investigation, said: 'Jones took complete advantage of his position of trust to encourage his victims to allow him to carry out sex offences having persuaded them that he was in an emotional relationship with them.
'I want to thank all the victims involved in this investigation for their bravery and patience while this case came to court. Although by pleading guilty, he has prevented the victims from having to relive their ordeal through a trial, they should not have been in this position in the first place.
'This enquiry highlights how important we consider all allegations of abuse , non recent or current and should assure other victims of abuse that every report is fully investigated by Norfolk Constabulary, with specialist officers guiding victims through the process.'
Jones was also placed on the Sex Offenders Register for life.