July 2017

This paedophile haunted the Florrie 50 years ago

A former warden at Liverpool”s “Florrie club”, who sexually abused a boy more than fifty years ago, was jailed.

Paedophile David Gallop, 85, was warden at the Florence Institute boys’ club – believed to the first purpose built boys’ club in the country – in the early 1960s.

And while in that role he repeatedly sexually molested a boy when he was aged 12 and 13 years old after grooming him.

Liverpool Crown Court heard that the impact of Gallop’s behaviour has affected the victim all his life and he became emotional while re-living in court his ordeal 55 years ago which he had kept secret for so long.

Sentencing Gallop to three and a half years in prison, the judge, Recorder Anthony Long, said: “You have shown no remorse or any empathy towards the little boy you abused.

“You caused him serious harm and saddled him, an innocent boy, with feelings of confusion, guilt and shame that have troubled him throughout his adult life.”

He said that he had read “moving” personal statements from the victim and his wife in which they eloquently expressed “the lasting affect that your conduct has had on him.

David Gallop outside court

David Gallop outside court

“It is profoundly to be hoped that having given evidence and seen you convicted he can finally lay these demons to rest.”

The law has changed since the offences were committed and the judge pointed out that one of the offences would today probably have been charged as attempted rape.

Gallop’s depraved behaviour also included repeatedly molesting the boy while they were on a camping holiday with other boys from the Florence Institute but as this happened outside the jurisdiction of the court there were no charges relating to that activity.

The judge imposed an indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Order banning Gallop from contact with anyone under 16, although an exception was made to allow him to attend church.

He is still banned from working with church organisations such as the scouts or Sunday school.

Recorder Long said: “There were some profoundly disquieting remarks made by the defendant which caused me concern that he may be a life long paedophile.”

Gallop, who now lives in Roseau, the capital of the Caribbean island Dominica, pleaded not guilty to five offences of indecent assault which spanned four to six months in the early 1960s.

He was convicted of all the offences after a four day trial.

The court heard that he has no previous convictions but he is under investigation for a similar offence or offences against a boy in 1975 in Nottingham where he was working as a social worker.

Sarah Holt, prosecuting, had told the jury that the victim had not complained at the time about Gallop’s behaviour as the club meant everything to him. “In his own words it was his world.”

She said that the boy “could not remember when the defendant first turned his attention to him but described how he would visit his flat after they had been to the cinema.”

Such incidents happened on four to six occasions in the defendant’s flat in Toxteth and he recalled that while they were both semi-naked Gallop climbed on top of him and tried to have sex with him.

Ms Holt added: “He said nothing as he was ashamed and frightened of what people might think and also frightened because he loved that club and loved attending there and was desperate to ensure nothing would affect him being allowed to spend time there.

“For many years he never said anything and it was not until his parents died, particularly his mum, that this all came out. He had not wanted to say anything while his parents were alive. He did not want to upset them and did not want them to feel guilty in any way.”

Miss Holt told the jury that the victim was interviewed by police in 2012 and again in 2013.

Gallop has been in Dominica for the last few years but when he returned to the UK in August 2013 he was arrested and interviewed. He had been on bail and staying with a friend on Merseyside during the trial and was accompanied at court by a local lay preacher.

Gallop denied all the allegations, and the court heard that when charged with sexual activity with a child he referred to sexual activity with a child who is “not consenting”. Asked by Miss Holt if he believed children could consent to sexual activity he said he would need to look on the internet, adding: “I could provide you evidence where the answer is yes.”

The judge ordered Gallop, who showed no reaction during the hearing to sign the Sex Offenders Register for life.

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