Man jailed for sex assault of daughters, foster child

Tim EdmundsAlbany Advertiser
Man jailed for sex assault of daughters, foster child
Camera IconMan jailed for sex assault of daughters, foster child Credit: iStockphoto

An Albany father who confessed to police he sexually assaulted two of his daughters and a foster daughter over a 19-year period for his own “sexual gratification” was yesterday jailed for more than two years.

The man, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the victims, pleaded guilty in Albany District Court to three counts of indecently dealing with a lineal relative child and two counts of indecently dealing with a child under 13 years.

The court heard the father indecently dealt with one of his daughters when she was only 1-2 years old.

State prosecutor Peter Phillips said her sister was also indecently dealt with when her father fondled her breasts while she slept on a camping trip when she was 12 years old, five years later.

Mr Phillips said the father attempted to unbutton her pyjama top and touch her breasts in her bedroom one month later, and the foster daughter was 10-12 years when she was subjected to a similar act twice on Christmas Eve between 2012 to 2014.

Defence lawyer Bruno Illari said the charges against his client only came about when he went to police “dobbing” himself in because no victim could recall the acts against them. Mr Illari said the man’s life, including his marriage, business and relationship with his now-adult children, had suffered since he came forward. Mr Phillips described the offences against the foster child as “incredibly disturbing” and a “gross breach of trust”, pointing to the father’s sexual interest in female children as not an isolated case.

Mr Illari told the court his client’s addiction to pornography led to the voyeuristic behaviour but called for consideration to a suspended prison term due to the remorse shown and four of the offences being on the lower end of the scale of seriousness.

In sentencing the father to 26 months prison, Judge John Prior described the conduct as “deviant behaviour” and would lead to the victims suffering long-term.

Judge Prior said while the “full and frank” confessions were the most significant mitigating factor, protection of vulnerable children was paramount. “These victims were all young and vulnerable,” he said.“There was a significant breach of trust ... you offended against these girls for your own sexual gratification.

“This offending has already caused significant impact on the victims. Your daughters no longer trust you with their children.”

The father was made eligible for parole and was issued a lifetime violence restraining order against the foster daughter.

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