‘Evil goes unpunished’: Home detention for sex offenders and names kept secret | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey

Two men have been sentenced to home detention after earlier admitting that, as students, they sexually abused teenaged girls, some of whom they filmed and shared the digital files with friends.

The two 26 year-olds, who were given permanent name suppression, earlier admitted representative charges of sexual conduct with a young person under 16.

They were arrested in December 2020 in relation to offending between December 2012 and February 2013.

The survivors have waited a decade for an end to the case. Nearly an entire year has passed since the two men pleaded guilty in August 2022.

One of the then 14-year-old survivors told the court in her Victim Impact Statement that she struggled to articulate the damage the men had done to her.

“How do I put into words 10 years of flashbacks, terror, anxiety, panic attacks, self-doubt and the unrealised potential of my life?”

Both survivors described how their lives spiralled out of control after the offending

Kathryn George/Stuff

Both survivors described how their lives spiralled out of control after the offending

Her statement, read by survivor advocate Ruth Money, said for the past decade she had suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder.

“It makes my family and I both overwhelmingly sad and angry that I have spent years navigating therapy and needing medication, meanwhile the offenders have lived their normal lives and dragged out the so-called justice process for as long as they possibly could.”

Survivor advocate Ruth Money. (File photo)


Survivor advocate Ruth Money. (File photo)

She said she was sexually objectified by her peers and left feeling worthless

“I feel as though evil goes unpunished and that society has discarded me.”

She said the two men, who she described as predators, have downplayed their abuse, and she vehemently opposed their bid to keep their names secret.

“Being named publicly helps to protect others and is part of an appropriate sentence for their serious criminal offending.”

Another survivor spoke of being manipulated and coerced by the two men who then shared the abuse with friends.

She went from being a “normal teenaged girl” to spiralling with mental health problems, drugs and alcohol.

The woman, whose victim impact statement was read by Crown prosecutor Lily Nunweek, said she had been blamed for the offending and was outcast.

“I felt I was in an endless debate to tell the truth.”

Crown prosecutor Lily Nunweek said the offending involved cruel and degrading treatment that was planned, filmed and shared among the offenders and their friends.

She said both defendants showed a low-level of insight into their offending, with one describing it as “risky, immoral but not a crime”.

Defence lawyer Ron Mansfield said ordinarily underage sex is dealt with in the Youth Court but said the media publicity of the case resulted in criticism of the police

He asked for a discharge without conviction for his client to protect his client’s future.

Defence lawyer Annabel Cresswell said her client had been “emotionally scarred” and had cut himself off from society and worked by himself in agriculture. She said he had in the past received death threats when people learnt of his identity.

Both lawyers asked for permanent name suppression and a discharge without conviction for their clients.

Judge Bergseng said the men’s treatment of the survivors was abhorrent.

His voice faltered at one moment as he read the horrific details of the group sex that involved the girls being affected by alcohol, subjected to group sex and degrading treatment that was filmed.

Judge Bergseng said the men did not meet the test for a discharge without conviction.

In sentencing, the judge provided discounts for youth, early guilty pleas and time spent on bail. He provided further discounts to one of the men on account of his background that included no parental support and early exposure to drugs.

He sentenced one man to 11 months home detention and the other to 7 months.

The agreed summary of facts was released to Stuff and shows the men abused two young teenagers on separate occasions in a converted garage sleepout.

The court document said a 14-year-old girl met one of the men at school. He was three years older than her.

He invited her to his friend’s converted garage. The group would drink alcohol before the teenage men sexually abused the girl.

Some of the episodes were recorded and shared with the abusers’ group of friends.

The young woman told police the abuse left her feeling “worthless”.

She suffered “significant emotional harm” and later turned to drugs. “She still suffers flashbacks or triggering moments and is presently on medication to assist,” the court documents said.

Another woman met the men when she was also 14.

She and some friends agreed to go to the garage, but once there she was abused by two of the men at the same time.

The court document recorded one of the men asked if he could perform a sex act on her. When she said “no”, he did it anyway.

The issue of consent was addressed in the court document.

“The defendants believed the girls were consenting at the time. However, looking back with the maturity and experience achieved because of their own maturity they now realise that the girls, given their age, intoxication and the circumstances, can be seen as not being capable of providing informed consent to sexual conduct.”

The case

The case dates back to 2013, when police initially conducted interviews.

The police said one of the young women was adamant she did not want to make a formal statement at the time. However, in 2020, she approached police to say she was now ready.

Detective Inspector John Sutton has previously said the decision was then made to lay an additional charge against two men, of sexual connection with a young person aged between 12-16.

Detective inspector John Sutton previously said a warrant for arrest would be sought for a third man who was overseas and would be arrested if he returned to New Zealand.

Sutton said police had not yet made any final decisions on whether an extradition request would be made.

In total, 35 men were assessed as “persons of interest” in the case and five suspects were identified.

Police canvassed 110 girls as part of their investigation.

Of those, 25 girls declined to give statements but were believed to have been the victims of some form of sexual offending, Sutton said.

Seven girls made formal complaints to police.

Where to get help for sexual violence

  • Rape Crisis 0800 88 33 00, click link for local helplines.

  • Victim Support 0800 842 846, text 4334, webchat or email [email protected].

  • The Harbour Online support and information for people affected by sexual abuse.

  • Women’s Refuge 0800 733 843 (females only)

  • Male Survivors Aotearoa Helplines across NZ, click to find out more (males only).

  • If you or someone else is in immediate danger, call 111.

Need help? If you or someone you know is in a dangerous situation, click the Shielded icon at the bottom of this website to contact Women’s Refuge in a safe and anonymous way without it being traced in your browser history. If you’re in our app, visit the mobile website here to access Shielded.

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