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Former scoutmaster sentenced to five years imprisonment for abuse

Former Greater Manchester scoutmaster, Peter Loco, sentenced to five years imprisonment for abuse on former boy scouts.

3 May 2016

A former scoutmaster from Greater Manchester, has been sentenced to five years imprisonment for multiple counts of indecent assault on children, as well as possession of indecent images of children, some of which he had created himself.

An initial complaint against Mr Loco was made by the complainant in 1996, but according to the man Greater Manchester Police took no further action at the time.

The investigation was reopened in approximately 2014, when upon executing a warrant upon Mr Loco’s address the police recovered indecent images of children on a laptop and a series of VHS video tapes of children being sexually abused.

According to reports/ evidence given at the trial some of the video footage recovered was of Peter Loco inappropriately touching young boys.

Despite a police appeal for witnesses none of the children in the videos are known to be identified, and sentence was given based upon Mr Loco’s own admissions that he had inappropriately touched a total of four young boys; three of which were former boy scouts in his charge.

Peter Loco commenced his volunteer position with the scouting association in 1991 and became scoutmaster at First Bredbury & Woodley Group in Stockport, Greater Manchester.

In making their appeal for witnesses Greater Manchester Police stressed that the incidents under investigation occurred in the mid-1990s, and that the perpetrator no longer had any involvement in the scouting association.

Following the entry of guilty pleas prior to the commencement of a criminal trial, sentencing took place at Manchester Crown Court, Minshull Street, on Tuesday 12 April 2016.

In sentencing Mr Loco to five years imprisonment, the judge considered numerous factors including the severity of the images recovered, the vulnerability of the children involved and the abuse of a position of trust.

Andrew Lord, solicitor within the Abuse team at Leigh Day, which represents the only identified complainant of abuse against Peter Loco, attended the sentencing hearing last month.

He said: “this is a devastatingly sad case in which a paedophile exploited his position of trust to gain unsupervised access to children.

“Our client had attempted to alert the relevant authorities to these crimes approximately twenty years ago, and it is due to his bravery and testament that Mr Loco has now been imprisoned. Now that the criminal proceedings have concluded we are advising our client on what civil action for compensation may now be taken”.

The previous police appeal for witnesses urged anybody with information relating to the abuse of Peter Loco to contact Greater Manchester Police on 0161 856 9314, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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