25 August 2023

Prominent Canberra man accused of historical child abuse offences

| Albert McKnight
Law Court

A Canberra man was granted bail after being handed 17 charges. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

CONTENT WARNING: This article refers to alleged child abuse.

A prominent Canberra man has been accused of committing numerous offences against a child, who was also related to him, over about a decade.

He allegedly sexually abused or physically assaulted the child on several occasions from when they were aged about three until they were in their mid-teens between the 1990s and the 2000s.

The man, now in his 70s, appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court on Thursday (24 August), where he was handed 17 charges.

These were six counts of having sexual intercourse with a young person under the age of 10 who was a lineal descendant, five counts of committing an act of indecency on a young person, four counts of assaulting a young person with the intent to have sexual intercourse and two counts of assaulting a young person.

He answered “Yes” each time he was asked if he understood the charges but did not enter any pleas.

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The court heard he would apply for bail, which the prosecutor did not oppose on agreed conditions.

Magistrate Robert Cook granted bail and adjourned the matter to next appear in court in September for pleas to be entered.

He also made an interim non-publication order, preventing the release of the names of the man or the complainant.

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