April 2019

Teenager jailed for sexually exploiting four girls following Operation Topaz investigation

A 19-year-old Bristol man has been jailed for multiple child sex offences committed against four teenage girls.

Thomas Junior Medler, known as TJ, was convicted of sexual activity with a girl aged under 16 and sexually assaulting another following a trial at Bristol Crown Court.

He had previously admitted sexual activity with two other girls who were also both aged under 16 at the time. The exploitation of one of the victims came after a sustained period of grooming.

Appearing at the same court today (11 April), Medler was sentenced to three years and six months in prison and issued with a 10 year sexual harm prevention order. He will also remain on the sex offender’s register indefinitely.

Sentencing, His Honour Judge Ambrose said the offences involving at least two of Medler’s victims were “characterised by pressure and manipulation” and despite some of them seemingly being content with the relationships “the laws [he broke] are intended to protect young girls whatever their wishes might be.”

The judge told Medler: “You knew in absolutely no uncertain terms where the line was, so your actions showed a flagrant disregard for the warnings you had been given.”

Medler was apprehended following an Operation Topaz investigation.

Operation Topaz is a police-led approach to tackling child sexual exploitation which sees agencies share intelligence to investigate reports, catch offenders and support victims.

Investigating officer DC Kim O’Donnell said: “While still young himself, Medler is a dangerous individual who seeks to manipulate and control young girls.

“He pretended to harm himself in order that his victims would come to his house – exploiting their belief he cared for them – before sexually abusing them.

“His victims often felt like they had no choice but to engage in sexually activity with him so that he didn’t take his own life.

“Such was the spell he cast over one of his victims that she hid in a bathroom cupboard for three-and-a-half hours while police were at his house just because he told her to.

“Two of his other victims waited more than two years before disclosing what had happened to them to police out of concern for the consequences their actions might have for him.”