Pedophile's sick bribe to dodge jail over sex abuse
HE tried to buy his victims' silence by handing them each a $5000 cheque.
The two sisters were innocent children when he sexually abused them in Casino in the late 1970s.
When they confronted him 15 years later, he paid them off and made them pledge in writing never to report him to police.
It was a calculating act which kept him out of jail for another two decades.
But the man's appalling history of child sexual abuse could not be hidden forever.
On Friday, the now 64-year-old faced sentencing in Lismore District Court after pleading guilty to nine counts of historic child sexual assault.
Those nine counts were just the tip of the iceberg. This was in fact the third time the man had faced sentencing for historic child sex abuse crimes.
The first occasion was in 2011, when he was sentenced to eight years' prison in Queensland's Kingaroy District Court for the sustained sexual abuse of his own daughter in the late 1980s.
Then in 2016 he was sentenced in Maroochydore District Court to two and a half years' jail for the habitual sexual abuse of the same two sisters he abused in Casino, crimes committed only after they had moved to regional Queensland in 1981.
The court heard those charges included between 20 to 30 acts of sexual abuse with one of the girls, and up to 100 occasions with her sister.
The Queensland sentencing judge had considered the man a pedophile who had a "very unnatural and unhealthy sexual interest in a significant number of pre-pubescent children". It was noted that he himself had been sexually abused as a child.
His crimes were described as "disgusting, degrading, and appalling", which was "exactly appropriate" description, according to Lismore District Court Judge Laura Wells.
His victims knew him through his relationship with their mother and a church group they attended.
They were between four and eight years old when the abuse took place in Casino. He was in his mid-20s.
It left the girls traumatised.
One sister had spoken of leading a "double life" to quash the memories of the abuse, She faced a battle with suicide and depression, alcohol abuse, and found it difficult to trust people.
The other said the abuse was "detrimental and devastating" to her life and suffered nightmares and post-traumatic stress.
NATIONAL 24/7 CRISIS SERVICES
Yet the court heard the man was "reluctant" to accept the damage he had done.
When they confronted him in 1996, he admitted his abuse but paid them off to "buy their silence".
The payment was conditional that they would not report the matter to police.
One of them did anyway, but was tragically told by police in Gympie that she didn't have enough information to proceed.
Finally in 2011 she went to police again.
This time there was no denying it - as he was already facing court over carrying on a sexual relationship with is own daughter.
A pre-sentence report said the man had an obsession with female genitalia his entire life and Judge Wells said "somewhat alarmingly he maintained his offending... was not causing harm and he felt satisfied he was (giving) pleasure".
The two girls had their innocence ripped away in a place where they "should have felt safe and secure from such abuse".
Judge Wells said that that if the offences were committed today against such young children, they would attract a "far higher punishment".
But she was required to sentence the man according to the more lenient sentencing standards of the 1970s.
For four counts of indecent assault of a female under 16 and four counts of act of indecent of a girl under 16, the man was sentenced to three years' jail, with a non-parole period of one year and six months.
Taking into time served while he was on remand, he will be released on parole on January 12, 2019.
He smiled to his wife as he was led away by correctional officers.