Jail for man who left boy traumatised after abuse on fishing trip in Rugby

The case was heard at Warwick Crown Court, which sits at the Justice Centre in Leamington
The case was heard at Warwick Crown Court, which sits at the Justice Centre in Leamington

A man who abused a boy on a fishing trip in Rugby more than 20 years ago has finally been brought to justice.

Robert Newman said he could not remember his victim, but a judge pointed out that his traumatised victim had never forgotten him.

Newman, 66, now of Shepperton Court, Nuneaton, was jailed for 16 months after pleading guilty at Warwick Crown Court to a charge of indecency with a child.

Judge Sylvia de Bertodano said that, because she had to deal with him under the law at the time of the offence, it was the longest sentence she could impose after giving him credit for his plea.

Prosecutor Ian Ball said that in December last year the victim went to the police to report what Newman had done to him when he was ten or 11 in the early 1990s.

Newman performed a sex act on himself and made the youngster take part until he struggled free.

Mr Ball added that in 1996 Newman had been convicted of inciting a child to commit an act of gross indecency, and in 2002 he was jailed for five years for offences including having sex with a boy under 16 and indecently assaulting younger boys.

Judge de Bertodano observed that, with a maximum sentence now of ten years, the starting point for sentencing Newman would be ‘12 months more than the maximum sentence’ available under the law at the time of the offence.

“I am very limited in what I can do compared to what I could do if this offence had occurred a year or two ago.”

David Rees, defending, said that since he served the five-year sentence Newman had not committed any further offences apart from a minor breach of a sexual offences prevention order, for which he had been given a caution.

Mr Rees said: “He is now a somewhat isolated individual.

“He doesn’t want to come into contact with people if there’s the slightest risk he could find himself in a position where there are young children around.”

Jailing Newman after rejecting a suggestion that the sentence could be suspended, Judge de Bertodano told him: “This little boy’s life was never the same after this evening. It’s something he has had to live with into adulthood.

“It would be an affront to justice and to this victim who has had the courage to face up to his demons if I didn’t send you to custody today.”

And the judge added that she could not reduce the sentence from the maximum term of two years before giving Newman the reduction of one third he was entitled to in law for his plea.