Devon

Totnes pensioner jailed for piggy-back abuse on girl

Deryk Alex-Sanders Image copyright Devon and Cornwall Police
Image caption Deryk Alex-Sanders was jailed for two years by a judge at Exeter Crown Court

A pensioner has been jailed for abusing a girl in the 1980s while they played games and he gave her piggy-back rides.

Deryk Alex-Sanders, 81, abused the eight-year-old girl when she visited his home, but the assaults were not revealed for more than 30 years.

Alex-Sanders, of Denys Road, Totnes, admitted three charges of indecent assault.

The pensioner, who is said to be in poor health, was jailed for two years at Exeter Crown Court.

'Victim dealing with consequences'

Judge Phillip Wassall said: "The impact of assaults on young children when they are growing up can be buried in their subconscious for many years until something triggers the memory.

"Offences like these change the lives of the victims, although it is clear you do not understand how disastrous they can be.

"You have had 30 years living a good and healthy life while the victim has spent that length of time trying to deal with the consequences of this offence."

The victim revealed the assaults during counselling, the court heard.

Lee Bremridge, prosecuting, said Alex-Sanders has a previous conviction for similar assaults on another girl at around the same time, for which he received a nine-month suspended sentence in 1997.

Martin Salloway, mitigating, said Alex-Sanders was now in very poor health which meant any jail sentence would be particularly hard for him to cope with.

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