Austin Dudley Parkinson
From the Daily News 7th March 2000
A New Plymouth funeral director has been sentenced to five years' jail after being found guilty of raping a 16-year-old girl in his care more than a decade ago. Justice Dame Silvia Cartwright in the Auckland High Court last week sentenced Austin Dudley Parkinson (66) to five years' jail for the rape and for having sexual intercourse with a girl under his care and protection.
In respect of the charges of sexual violation by unlawful sexual connection and attempted rape, Parkinson was sentenced to two years' jail to be served concurrently with the main sentence. The offences occurred at Okato between August 1, 1987, and June 30, 1988.
In sentencing Parkinson, Justice Cartwright said there had been a serious breach of trust because the victim had been entrusted to the care of the Parkinson family. "Whatever was in the prisoner's mind, this was still a young and extremely vulnerable girl, one who was treating him as a father," she said. At the time of the offending the complainant was 16 and Parkinson was aged 54, married with four children. "The very fact of the broad disparity in age itself reinforces that breach of trust.
"Instead of being able to rely on him to nurture and protect her, he used the circumstances presenting themselves for his own sexual gratification and self-indulgence. "And it is palpable for the emotional harm reparation report that the impact on the complainant has been devastating and may well affect her for the rest of her life," Justice Cartwright said.
Parkinson's counsel Susan Hughes submitted that the sentencing range should have been at the lowest end of the scale and that Parkinson maintained his position throughout that the sexual offending was in fact the result of a consensual relationship.
Date of Birth
1934 (D.O.B. is approximate)
Sentenced to just 5 years in March 2000
Released April 2003
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OFFENCES / CONVICTIONS
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