June 2016

Pervert jailed for 12 years for Tunbridge Wells sex abuse


An elderly pervert shouted “It’s all lies” and pointed an accusing finger at one of his victims as he was jailed for 12 years for sex abuse dating back half a century.

Paul Philpott’s wife wept as she sat in a wheelchair at the side of the court after sentence was passed on Tuesday.

The 79-year-old pensioner, who was living in Tunbridge Wells at the time of the offences in the 1960s, was convicted in April of four offences of indecency with a child and one of indecent assault

A jury at Maidstone Crown Court heard one of the victims still suffered flashbacks.

She told of being molested in a dark room, the force Philpott used and her “fear of the man”. She added it left her feeling ashamed and to blame.

“It was a long time ago and I have had it in a place in my head,” she said. “I was small, helpless. I just get flashbacks of the same thing. I was afraid all the time.

“It’s not something that I speak about but it’s something constantly with me. Even now when I speak about it, the distress it causes me.”

Philpott, now of Kingfisher Drive, Eastbourne, was first arrested in 2013 and then again last year, when a second woman came forward and made a single allegation.

Prosecutor Nicholas Hall said each time he denied anything untoward had happened.

The second woman told police that as a child she had been “enticed” by Philpott.

Jennifer Gray, defending, said Philpott was in poor health and his wife had suffered strokes.

“The convictions will have a great effect on her,” said Miss Gray. “There has been a great passage of time – 45 years since the last allegation. This is a man in the twilight of his life.”

Judge David Griffith-Jones QC said the offences amounted to oral rape involving two young girls. One of them was subjected to a “sustained campaign of sexual abuse”.

“The psychological effects of such offences on such young victims are always likely to be severe,” he continued.

“All these offences were committed a very long time ago. They involved planning and grooming. There is only little mitigation. On any view a custodial term of significant length is demanded.”

Philpott’s name will appear indefinitely on the sex offenders’ register

Detective Constable David Turner, the investigating officer, said: “Paul Philpott sexually abused these very young girls and they have had to live with the trauma of what had happened well into adult life.

“This conviction shows that reports made by victims of historic abuse will always be taken seriously and we hope his prison sentence will encourage other victims of this type of abuse to come forward.

“Any complaint of this type will be investigated thoroughly by specialist officers, with victims treated with care and understanding.”