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Aylesbury Vale Sex Attacker Jailed

Leslie Smith

3:01pm 23rd April 2012

A 75 year-old man has been jailed for 18 months today (23/4), in connection with sex offences he committed in the 1980s following an investigation by Thames Valley Police’s Child Abuse Investigation Unit (CAIU).  

Leslie William Smith, of Maritime Street, Edinburgh, admitted two counts of indecent assault on a man aged 16 or above, between November 1985 and October 1986 at an earlier court hearing. He was sentenced at Aylesbury Crown Court today.

The assaults happened while Smith was a coach at a cricket club in the Aylesbury Vale area of Buckinghamshire. The charges relate to a victim who was aged between 16 and 17 years old when the incidents occurred.

One of the assaults happened on a train when Smith and the victim were travelling to Scotland.

Following the sentencing, the victim has released the following statement:

"Being sexually abused as a child has had a devastating effect on me.  My life has been blighted in so many areas. I thought that I would be able to handle it all on my own and developed a whole series of coping mechanisms and masks to numb myself from the pain and suffering I experienced as a child.  Unfortunately, one unforeseen event acted as a trigger and sent me tumbling back to my childhood.  It was as though I had been transported back in time.

“Since then, I have been treated for clinical depression and stress. I have suffered from frequent panic and anxiety attacks, insomnia, agoraphobia and feelings of acute worthlessness.  It got so bad at times that I just didn't care whether I lived or died.

“My message to anyone out there who has experienced any sort of abuse is please don't suffer in silence. You can get expert help.

“The Crown Prosecution Service, Thames Valley Police and their volunteer support team have been magnificent.  They have been both sensitive and caring, as well as managing my expectations throughout the legal process.  In addition, my GP, my therapist, the NHS psychiatry team, my family and close friends have all helped me to confront my demons, kept me alive in my darkest hours and given me hope where there was none - a big thank you to all of you.

“I am, of course, delighted that the weight of evidence against Smith forced him to plead guilty to the charges against him.”

Det Sgt Joe Banfield, of the CAIU based in Aylesbury told Mix96: “Thames Valley Police will always carry out a full and thorough investigation when allegations such as this are made, even when the offences were committed some time ago.

“The victim showed great bravery in coming forward and disclosing the abuse he suffered. The fact Leslie Smith has admitted two counts of indecent assault at least means the victim will not have to relive his ordeal in court.

“Smith held a position of responsibility within the cricket club he was a part of, and the fact he abused this position to carry out these crimes is despicable.”

In addition to the custodial sentence, Smith will have to sign on to the Sex Offenders’ Register for ten years and he has been disqualified from working with children.

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