Norfolk

Former pastor at Norfolk church denies abusing girl

A former pastor at a Norfolk church has denied sexually abusing a girl over a seven-year period.

Malcolm Hoare, 68, of Whitefriars Road, King's Lynn, is accused of having sex with a young member of the King's Lynn Baptist Church congregation.

Norwich Crown Court was told the abuse started on the 11-year-old girl in the late 70s.

Mr Hoare denies four charges of having sex with a child and eight counts of indecent assault.

'Considerate and manipulating'

Matthew McNiff, prosecuting, told the court: "This behaviour occurred regularly over a period of years.

"Having befriended her he would have sex with her, on a weekly basis."

Mr McNiff said Mr Hoare was a senior member of the church and was "gentle and caring and considerate and manipulating".

Giving evidence the woman said she went along with the abuse at the time but was not sure why.

She told the court Mr Hoare took her out on Sundays after church for a ride in a car and "thought that was what the church expected of me".

She said he had since tried to put it out of her mind but could not and wondered if he had abused anyone else.

The trial continues.

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