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‘HORRIFYING’: Victim of sexual abuse speaks out after Northwood teacher is sentenced again

 Published on: 10th June 2024   |   By: Bryn Holmes   |   Category: Uncategorized

A former teacher who sexually abused several young boys whilst working in Northwood during the 1970s has been given an additional sentence after another victim recently came forward.

Richard Gaines, 79, was previously jailed for five years and two months back in 2019 after he admitted seven counts of gross indecency with a boy under the age of 14. He committed the offences while working at St Martin’s Preparatory School in Northwood around 50 years ago.

Then, in November 2023, Gaines was arrested once more and pleaded guilty to two more historic instances of the same crime after another victim came forward. Gaines appeared at Isleworth Crown Court on Tuesday, May 14.

The judge gave Gaines a sentence of 18 months’ imprisonment, suspended for two years.

The victim, a man in his 60s whose identity cannot be revealed, recently spoke of his abuse for the first time and how it has affected him.

He said: “While many years have passed, it remains very difficult to talk about what happened and the horrifying effect it had on me.

“For years, I couldn’t bring myself to speak about what happened. Being sexualised by Gaines robbed me of my childhood and innocence. I’ve had issues trusting people and being able to make new friends or form relationships as a result.

“When I spoke with the police, it felt such a relief to be heard and believed after all these years.

“No sentence Gaines received will ever make up for what he did, not only to me but others.

“However, I just hope that by speaking out, others who have been abused feel that they don’t have to go through what happened to them alone.”

Photo credit: Richard Kaminski/Shutterstock

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