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domenica 23 aprile 2017
"Operation Marmion": Children’s home sexual abuse
The former manager of a children’s home convicted of child sex offences has been jailed for 18 years.
Colin Dennis Davis, aged 75 years, of Lingfield Gardens, Southampton, was found guilty at Southampton Crown Court of serious sexual offences, including gross indecency and indecent assault, involving 8 boys under the age of 16, following an investigation by Hampshire Constabulary's Operation Marmion.
The offences took place in the 1970s and early 1980s, and seven of the victims were resident at the former Salerno Road children’s home in Southampton. This home closed in 2013.
The investigation did not involve allegations relating to any other children’s homes or institutions.
Following the hearing, Judge Peter Ralls QC commended the bravery of the victims and the efforts of Hampshire Constabulary’s Operation Marmion detectives for their thorough investigation.
Detective Inspector Jim Park, who led the investigation, said: “The men who gave evidence were vulnerable boys at the time that Davis offended against them and have had to live with the impact of that abuse for 40 years or more.
"The fact that they were in the children’s home indicates that they had already had a difficult start in life. They should have been safe in Davis’ care, but instead he betrayed his position of trust again and again, taking advantage of their vulnerability.
"I have great admiration for the victims who came to give evidence. They have shown remarkable bravery and courage throughout the investigation.
"We are pleased that justice has been served. I would urge any other victims who have suffered such abuse to make contact with us. You don’t have to suffer in silence.”
An NSPCC spokesperson said: “Davis exploited the trust of a group of vulnerable young people placed in his care for his own twisted gratification.
“It’s thanks to his victims’ courage in speaking out about their traumatic ordeals, which will have had a profound impact on their lives, that Davis is now behind bars.
“This case is further proof that survivors of abuse will be listened to – no matter how much time has passed – and offenders will be brought to justice for their crimes.
“Adults worried about a child can contact the NSPCC’s helpline on 0808 500 1111. Children can contact Childline on 0800 1111.”
Today’s hearing follows a significant investigation conducted as part of Operation Marmion - Hampshire Constabulary's ongoing review of non-recent Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and abuse cases.
The review includes a re-examination of available evidence, and the offer of additional support alongside partner agencies to those affected by CSE and abuse.
The work of Operation Marmion also involves child protection specialists from local authorities.
Previous victims of child sexual exploitation (CSE) and abuse, or anyone with information, can contact Operation Marmion detectives at Hampshire Constabulary's Southern Training Headquarters at Netley by phoning 101. Mini-com users can phone 18001 101.
Alternatively, information can be given anonymously by phoning the independent Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.
Further support services are available in south west Hampshire for victims of sexual violence and abuse, including Southampton-based Yellow Door. For more information, please call the Yellow Door helpline on 02380 636313, or visit the website:http://www.yellowdoor.org.uk/