A bisexual Sydney high school teacher who had sex with three teenage students has been jailed for at least six years.
Parramatta District Court judge James Bennett on Wednesday said Cameron White had abused his position as a teacher to exploit the vulnerable, naive students for his own sexual gratification.
White, 39, was found guilty by a jury in May of 14 counts of aggravated sexual assault and five counts of sexual intercourse with a person under care involving two female students and one male student.
Judge Bennett said White had targeted the students between 2007 to 2013, starting when the male victim was 14 and the girls aged 15 and 16.
The boy had had a crush on White, who later called the teenager his “bitch”, while White took both girls’ virginity.
The judge said White had had sex with the younger girl between 2010 and 2011, often picking her up from the railway station and taking her back to his unit.
On one occasion, White was having sex with the schoolgirl when she heard a noise outside and he told her not to worry because it was only his housemate.
White had sex with the second girl between 2012 and 2013, including at his mother’s home as well as on the emergency exit fire stairs at her school and after her Year 12 formal.
Judge Bennett said the second girl, in her victim impact statement, told how she did not tell anyone about what White was doing because she thought she had been in love with him.
She had been excited when White began to groom her and experienced a “giddiness” because she was so happy to have attracted the attentions of the older man.
The judge said the girl “endured whispers at school behind her back” about her relationship with the teacher, lied to her family and friends about him and would regularly defend him but now suffered from a “sense of shame”.
Judge Bennett described her as “an impressionable young girl who had not long before left childhood”.
The girl had been insulted by White’s attitude during the trial and her feelings about what had happened to her “ricocheted between pain, numbness and grief”.
White continues to protest his innocence and has expressed no remorse.
Judge Bennett did not accept the Crown’s submission that White was a predator, saying the former teacher’s behaviour while “abhorrent” could be partly explained by his immaturity.
White was self-engrossed and had easily surrendered to flattery from his students to exploit their sexual interest in him, the judge said.
But White had abused his position as a teacher and used his victims’ vulnerability for his own sexual gratification.
White was jailed for 11 years with a non-parole period of six years. He showed no emotion before being led from the dock.