Belfast Telegraph

Foster carer from NI who 'preyed' on kids is jailed in Australia

A notorious child rapist from Northern Ireland has been jailed in Australia for abusing seven vulnerable young people and committing a catalogue of sexual offences while acting as a foster parent
A notorious child rapist from Northern Ireland has been jailed in Australia for abusing seven vulnerable young people and committing a catalogue of sexual offences while acting as a foster parent

By Staff Reporter

A notorious child rapist from Northern Ireland has been jailed in Australia for abusing seven vulnerable young people and committing a catalogue of sexual offences while acting as a foster parent.

Desmond Gore (73) was found guilty of abusing four girls and two boys aged between six and nine who were in his care from October 2007 to August 2011.

The prolific paedophile, who emigrated in 1968, was also found guilty of abusing another girl not in his foster care.

He was convicted on 20 of the 21 charges on Tuesday.

Despite branding the charges against him as "complete and utter lies" Gore was sentenced to 15 years and four months behind bars when he appeared in WA District Court in Perth yesterday.

Judge Christopher Stevenson said the painter and decorator's crimes against extremely vulnerable victims required a significant degree of pre-planning, physical force and psychological manipulation.

Referring to the biblical story of David and Goliath the judge branded Gore's behaviour as an extreme breach of trust which caused harm, damage and destruction.

"You preyed upon them, you took advantage of the situation," Gore was told.

"At least David had a stone, these children had nothing, they had nobody and nothing and you had absolute power over them in every sense."

During an eight-day trial the court heard how Gore put tape over one girl's mouth to prevent her from screaming while he raped her.

The sexual predator told another victim no one would believe she had been raped because she was "not worth it".

The first act of abuse occurred 14 days into Gore's first foster placement and continued for four years at his Armadale home.

In 2013, a care worker stumbled upon a gut-wrenching letter belonging to one of Gore's victims who had moved out of his home two years earlier.

"I feel safe when loved," the child had written. "I feel sad when I have sex with my granddad."

The Department of Child Protection (DCP) put his foster carer status under review, but the court heard how Gore befriended case workers as part of a bid to conceal his crimes.

He tried to persuade them that the children were "very damaged" and not to be believed.

It wasn't until 2017 that the young girl was able to disclose the offending to investigators.

Gore, who was prescribed Viagra in the 1990s and began getting testosterone injections, told the court he was impotent at the time of the abuse and claimed that he was never left alone with his foster children.

Judge Stevenson said it was "unfortunate" that the children were not believed on two occasions in 2009 and 2015 and compared the "accusatory" interrogation of an eight-year-old child to the Spanish inquisition.

Some of Gore's victims, many of whom are now young adults, struggled to finish giving evidence during the trial - one of them had to be admitted to a psychiatric facility.

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