December 2019

Woman’s 10-year fight to see ‘determined paedophile’ who abused her when she was eight-years-old jailed

A woman who was sexually abused at the age of eight, but was warned her attacker would never face justice, has told of her legal battle to get him locked up as he was jailed for six years.

The woman had gone to police to claim Andrew Ervin had assaulted her in the 1990s – but was initially told there was not enough evidence to bring him to court.

It was only when she appealed against the decision not to prosecute Ervin that officials changed their minds and ordered him to face trial by judge and jury.

At Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester, the 57-year old from Droylsden, denied wrongdoing but was locked up after he was found guilty by a jury of three charges of indecent assault.

He was also ordered to sign the Sex Offender Register indefinitely.

In a statement the victim said: ”As a result of what he has done I have suffered from depression and anxiety for over 10 years – I have to regularly see my doctor.

“I also have issues with trust – I don’t have trust in people especially men and I also have a fear someone could do the same to my children, it has taken a long time to trust my partner.

“I had difficulty in my confidence growing up and I bottled up what happened as I felt ashamed that he did that to me.”

She added: “When I attended the police station I have to talk to a complete stranger about painful aspects of my private life, even though I know it was the right thing to do it was still very difficult.

“I was told he wouldn’t be charged but I appealed the decision and had to wait and I was happy he was eventually charged.

“However I became anxious and worried about going to court. I drove myself to court as I can’t get public transport due to anxiety.

“I was scared going into court and scared about giving evidence. I’m still suffering from depression and anxiety the feelings I have suffered from a long time haven’t gone away.”

The incidents occurred when Ervin, a family friend, was asked to look after the girl, then aged eight, while her mother was out.

During her ordeal, she was taken to a house that Ervin was renovating where he forced her to watch a pornographic video and then undress with him to simulate sex ‘like the adults did’ on the tape.

He told her they would ‘try again when she was older’ and forbade her from telling anyone. The victim kept her ordeal a secret but went to police in 2018.

Ervin was heard to mutter ‘it isn’t true’ during the sentencing hearing.

Judge John Potter told him: ”You were entrusted to look after this child – instead what you did was to sexually abuse her.

“You told her she wasn’t to tell anyone what you had done to her and she remained silent until she was able to tell her friend at school, her brother and other family members including her mother.

“When she sought counselling she was eventually able to tell the police about your abuse of her and you were eventually arrested in 2018 and confronted by the police with what you have done.

“You lied to the police in your interview with them and lied to the jury in course of the trial.

“The abuse against a child when you were three times older then her, shows you to have been a determined paedophile who isolated and abused a child for your own selfish and perverted gratification.

“You have caused very great harm as is evident from the content of the victim impact statement and her demeanour whilst giving evidence during the course of her trial.

“It is quite clear that she has been significantly psychologically affected by your abuse of her when she was a child many years ago. She remains traumatised by what you did to her.

“You have shown not a shred of remorse towards our victim at any point in these proceedings.”