Thetford: Man Jailed For String Of Sex Offences

A man is beginning an 18-year prison sentence after being found guilty of a string of sexual offences against children and one adult in Thetford.

A man is  beginning an 18-year prison sentence after being found guilty of a string of sexual offences against children and one adult in Thetford.

49-year-old Gary Steed of Peppers Close, Weeting, had denied all charges against him but was found guilty by a jury at Norwich Crown Court following a four week trial.

Steed's offending took place in Thetford over a period of 23 years.

He first committed a sexual offence against a young girl in the 1980s - this abuse lasted many years before stopping. In 2006, he began to offend again, entering into an inappropriate sexual relationship with a young adult; more recently he sent text messages to a female child, grooming and inciting her for further sexual abuse, and he also sexually touched another young girl on several occasions.

Steed was yesterday (Thursday 13 June 2013) sentenced to 18 years imprisonment and must serve a minimum of 13 before being considered for release.

Detective Constable Tina King, who led the investigation said: "This has been a long and complex case which has involved extensive enquiries. Steed is a dangerous individual who preyed on young girls in the Thetford area for many years. I would like to commend the victims for their bravery in coming forward and reporting the abuse they have suffered, and I hope that yesterday's sentence gives them some comfort that he will be locked up for many years to come and closure to be able to move forward with their lives.

"Steed has denied his actions throughout which meant the victims had to attend court and relive their ordeal which has proven to be an immensely stressful experience for both them and their families. On that note, I would like to thank the Crown Prosecution Service who assisted in the investigation and to those who provided support to the victims."

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