Winchester Teacher Jailed For Sex Offences

A junior school teacher from Winchester's been jailed for three years for carrying out sex offences against pupils.

Benjamin Sarfas admitted seven counts of sexually assaulting 9 young girls - and voyeurism.

The 31-year-old from Springvale Road was sacked by Kempshott Junior School in Basingstoke.

Sarfas was sentenced at Winchester Crown Court after pleading guilty to seven counts of sexual assault of a child under the age of 13, 11 charges of taking indecent photographs of a child and one count of voyeurism by filming some of his victims with his mobile phone.

The 31-year-old, of Springvale Road, Winchester, Hampshire, has been dismissed by Kempshott Junior School in Basingstoke, where he began work in September 2011 as a newly qualified teacher.

Judge Keith Cutler said: ``This court accepts and understands the anger of the parents of the nine children named as your victims. I share the shock and horror.

``All these actions can be described as disgusting and appalling, the effects on these children has been significant, blighting what should have been a carefree youth.''

The judge ordered Sarfas to sign the sex offenders' register for life and said he would also be banned from working with children and ordered the destruction of his computer equipment.

Kerry Maylin, prosecuting, said the offences related to nine girls aged between eight and 11 and the sexual assaults involved the defendant groping the bottoms of the youngsters.

She said the offences came to light when two of the victims were overheard by a parent talking about the incidents during a sleepover.

Miss Maylin read statements produced by parents of the victims describing the impact of the abuse on their children.

She said one parent wrote that her daughter ``must have been frightened and confused'' and had ``lost her zest'', and continued: ``It's devastating as a mother to see this and I am not sure she will get this back.

``I have seen a dramatic change in her behaviour, she is now withdrawn and feels isolated amongst her peers, she finds it very difficult to trust people and changed her views of men.''

Dee Connolly, defending, said that Sarfas was ``sorry for the pain he has caused'' and he was undergoing counselling to help prevent any further offending.

She added: ``He is a broken man whose life is ruined and who will never have the career he loved again.''

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