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Married church-goer on trial for allegedly sexually assaulting girl in lane

By Plymouth Herald  |  Posted: December 03, 2013

By Stuart Abel

Married church-goer on trial for allegedly sexually assaulting girl in lane

A MARRIED church-goer sexually assaulted a girl in his car on moorland, a court heard.

Trevor Paddon-Hall touched the youngster indecently in a dark lane, Plymouth Crown Court was told.

Paddon-Hall, aged 59, of Marythorne Road, Bere Alston, denies sexually assaulting the girl as she sat in the front passenger seat in April 2008.

A jury at his trial saw a recording of the girl telling a police officer: “I was scared. I did not really know what was going on. I was worried and just wanted to go home, really.”

Jason Beal, opening the case for the Crown Prosecution Service, said Paddon-Hall was “involved with several charities” at the time, collecting clothes and furniture for good causes.

He added he was giving the girl a lift when he turned down a “dark lane on the moor”.

Mr Beal told the jury he then touched her indecently. He added the girl told him her mother would be worrying about her and he stopped.

Mr Beal said she did not immediately tell her family when she got home, but confided in friends a couple of days later.

The jury heard those friends did tell her mother and she sent a text to Paddon-Hall warning him to stay away.

But she did not report the allegation to police.

Mr Beal said officers only became involved when a family friend shouted something at Paddon-Hall in public towards the end of 2010.

The jury heard the girl tell police in a recorded interview: “I was scared. I did not really know what would happen to me.”

She added she was worried about telling people afterwards in case they thought she was “weird”.

Ali Rafati, for Paddon-Hall, suggested to the girl over a videolink that he had not been driving at all during April 2008.

The court heard he had broken a bone in his hand in a fall in March that year.

Mr Rafati told the girl, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, that the trip and the sexual assault had never happened.

She said: “That is what he says, but I am telling the truth. He did drive me and did do this stuff to me because I would have no reason to lie about it.

“Why would I make up such a thing?”

The trial continues.