July 2005

Paedophile back behind bars

A man who was jailed for 10 years for sexually abusing young children is back behind bars after targeting another six-year-old girl.

Robert Gray, of Norfolk Street, off Hinckley Road, Leicester, had a history of befriending “vulnerable” families in order to gain unsupervised access to their young children, Leicester Crown Court heard. He was jailed for five years after admitting he indecently assaulted the child at her sixth birthday party, in October last year.

The court heard that Gray ingratiated himself with the girl’s father after learning he had a young daughter.

He pounced after gaining the family’s trust and concealing his past.

The 52-year-old committed the offence within months of being released on licence from a 10-year sentence for the rape and serious indecent assault of a 12-year-old girl.

Prosecutor Balraj Bhatia told the court that on that occasion, Gray confessed his crimes to police, telling them the girl had enjoyed the sex and often made the first moves.

He also admitted indecently assaulting another 12-year-old girl and carrying out an act of gross indecency and a further serious sexual assault on a 12-year-old boy.

In each case, the serial paedophile, who has a history of sexual abuse of children dating back to the 1980s, befriended his victims’ parents and gave the youngsters sweets and money in return for sexual favours.

In the latest case, the abuse only came to light after Gray was spotted holding the child’s hand by a policeman, who alerted his colleagues.

Jailing him today, Judge Philip Head said Gray posed “a very real threat to young children”.

He told him: “You have no empathy for your victims and you have no willpower to control your urges.” Gray was banned from having unsupervised contact with anyone under 16 and from going within 200 yards of schools and play areas.