AN Albury man with long community involvement has been jailed for 20 months over what a District Court judge described as a breach of trust with sexual assault offences involving two grandchildren.
Judge Martin Blackmore described charges of aggravated indecent assault and three counts of attempted intercourse with a child aged under 10 as “seriously wrong”, but at the lower end of the scale for such matters.
“He must serve a sentence because that is the only penalty open to me,” Judge Blackmore said.
“The offender has struggled to come to terms with what he has done.”
The man, 64, had previously pleaded guilty to the charges and his sentencing was deferred to the present sittings for reports on him to be prepared.
The assaults happened at the man’s home in 2011 on children aged five and three.
Judge Blackmore was told the man has been seeing a psychologist since June and now understands the damage his offending has caused his family.
Barrister Grant Brady tendered a list of the man’s community involvement.
Mr Brady said the vulnerability of the children was part and parcel of the offences.
Crown prosecutor Max Pincott said the age of the children was a highly aggravating factor.
Judge Blackmore said there was a long list of community organisations assisted by the man over the years.
He had previously been held in high regard by his own children before the offences became known.
“The offender has expressed remorse for his actions,” Judge Blackmore said.
“Recognition of the wrongfulness of his actions is the first step towards rehabilitation.
“He will benefit from a longer period on parole.”
Judge Blackmore said he took into consideration the man’s community involvement, his lack of any prior criminal offences and health issues he suffered.
A total term of three years and four months was imposed, with a minimum term of 20 months from yesterday.
Judge Blackmore has ordered the man to have Probation and Parole Service supervision when released on parole with psychological counselling.