By Joanna Menagh.
A paedophile who sexually abused a young girl offered up by her father in Perth has been sentenced to more than 12 years behind bars.
Ryan Trevor Clegg, 43, was one of seven men — including the girl’s father — who were charged in 2015 with sexually abusing the girl when she was aged about 11 or 12.
Clegg had sex with her on four separate occasions during meetings arranged by the father, who stayed in the room and watched the abuse happening.
Clegg also took indecent photographs and recordings of her, some of which he passed on to others on internet chat sites.
The District Court heard Clegg then boasted on the sites about what he had done.
In one conversation, he told an unknown person: “[the girl] grizzles, but sometimes I think she does like it. I am gentle with her.”
However, prosecutor Justin Whalley said during interviews with police, the girl described Clegg as being “forceful” with her, and that she tried pushing him away but she “wasn’t strong enough”.
Clegg pleaded guilty to 15 charges including sexual penetration of a child, indecently dealing with a child, distributing child exploitation material and taking indecent recordings of second girl who was aged about five or six.
A search of his computer also found more than 42,000 child exploitation images.
Clegg’s lawyer Ian Hope said at the time of the offences his client was “psychologically fragile”, and he had undergone counselling since being charged.
Mr Hope also said while some of Clegg’s comments on the internet chat site were “utterly vulgar”, he had no intention of carrying out what was said.
Abuse ‘perverted, repeated’: judge
Judge Bruce Goetze said the conversations showed Clegg had “no regard whatsoever” for his victim.
He described his offending as “perverted, repeated, persistent and prolonged”, saying the girl was in a “uniquely vulnerable” position because she was being “peddled around by her father”.
“She was not a willing participant. She tried to push you away,” Judge Goetze said.
“You used her as a sexual object, as a vehicle to indulge your own sexual interests … You took advantage of her without regard for her welfare.”
Judge Goetze took into account that Clegg had sought counselling after being charged, that he was remorseful and that he had pleaded guilty, avoiding the need for a trial.
“That [the victim] does not have to give evidence in court is, I’m sure, a great relief to her,” he said,
Clegg will have to serve 10 years and nine months before he can be released on parole.
He is the sixth man jailed for abusing the girl, who is now 15.
Her father was sentenced to 22 and a half years jail last year, although he has lodged an appeal against the term.
This post originally appeared on ABC News.
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