Canonbury sex offence man jailed for 13 years after abusing his position of trust

Former carer Leslie Paul has been jailed for historical sexual offences against children. Picture: M

Former carer Leslie Paul has been jailed for historical sexual offences against children. Picture: Metropolitan Police - Credit: Archant

A Canonbury man was jailed for 13 years this afternoon for 17 historical sexual offences against children in his care.

Leslie Paul, 64, of Clephane Road, was sentenced at Blackfriars Crown Court for offences of indecent assault and indecency while working as a carer for Lambeth Social Services.

Between 1980 and 1988, Paul carried out the offences at Lambeth Children’s Home in South Vale, where the four male victims resided.

In October 2012, the first victim came forward to report allegations against Paul. An investigation was launched and further victims were identified. Paul was arrested at his home address in March 2013.

He had been found guilty of the offences at Blackfriars last month.

One of the victims released a statement through specialist abuse lawyers Irwin Mitchell after Paul was sentenced today.

“The abuse I suffered as a teenager ruined my life. I didn’t speak about it until I was contacted by the police as I thought nobody would believe what happened to me - as I was ignored at the time it was happening to me.

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“I’m relieved that Paul was found guilty and will now spend time in prison for what he did to me and some of the other people who lived at South Vale. I can finally start to move on with my life knowing that everyone now believes me.

“I hope that by speaking out, others who have suffered abuse by those who were supposed to be in a position of trust will feel they can come forward and that justice can be done - even 30 years down the line.

“I struggled to come to terms with what happened to me throughout my life, but all I feel now is relief and I’m looking forward to moving on with my life and putting this ordeal behind me.”

Det Supt Ang Scott, from the specialist crime and operations command, said: “Paul was responsible for the care of his victims - the ultimate position of trust. He used that power to take advantage and commit the most serious of crimes against them.

“I commend the bravery of the victims who were forced to relive their experiences in open court. It is their testimonies which brought Paul to justice today, and I hope they take some comfort from that.”

Det Supt Scott added: “We take very seriously any allegations of sexual abuse reported to us. If anyone believes they have been a victim I would urge them to contact the sexual offences, exploitation and child abuse command on 020 8217 4921.

“We have specially trained officers who are here to listen, investigate, and bring offenders to justice. Alternatively you can contact police via 101. In an emergency always dial 999.”