Monster father abused 'brainwashed' daughter

THE girl didn't know that what her father did to her wasn't right.

She was just five but already had been brainwashed into believing the sexual abuse she had endured was normal.

For two years and seven months, the Southern Downs man she called daddy preyed on her innocence for his own gratification.

His daughter is 25 now but still struggles with anxiety and depression because of the sustained abuse she endured when she was aged five to eight.

Yesterday, that same girl watched as the man who abused her, her cousins and her friends, was jailed for more than five years.

As he becomes eligible for parole in July, 2018, his daughter will be taking the first strides towards living a normal life for the first time.

In a powerful victim impact statement read to the Toowoomba District Court yesterday, the girl said "unlike most people, I never had the opportunity to experience life without the trauma of sexual abuse".

"I never realised growing up the way I did how far away from normal it truly was," Crown prosecutor Noel Needham read on the girl's behalf.

"I was brainwashed from a very early age."

The court heard the man first abused his niece when she was nine or 10 when she was swimming in a dam on the family's property in 1989.

Two years later, he abused another niece who was 14 or 15 at the time while he was in his 30s.

But the bulk of the 32 counts of indecent treatment of a child were against his daughter, and started when she was five - from 1996 to August, 1999.

The sexual relationship ended in 2006.

Either at the family home, on a camping trip or what was meant to be a birthday celebration holiday in Toowoomba, the man subjected his daughter to abuse that Judge Anthony Rafter said corrupted the girl.

The court heard the man abused his daughter and her friend on a camping trip to Goondiwindi, before handing her a friend of his inside the tent pitched on the banks of a river.

"There are a series of offences which occurred on a camping trip when you and another adult male were camping with your daughter and a friend of hers," Judge Rafter said.

"These offences highlight just how seriously you corrupted your daughter and the fact that you were prepared to involve another adult male in the offending against your daughter is particularly despicable."

While at a Toowoomba motel, the man waited until his daughter fell asleep before turning to her friend, aged eight or nine, and tried to coax her into performing sex acts on him.

He grew more forceful when she resisted before he eventually backed off.

The abuse ended when the man was caught naked in bed with his daughter's friend during a sleepover at his home in December 1999.

It was reported to police and the man was removed from the home but by September 2000, when no charges were filed against him, he moved back in.

"Even after the abuse had physically stopped, I still had to live under the same roof as this person, see his face every day until I had the ability to move out on my own," Mr Needham read from the girl's statement.

"Fathers are meant to teach their daughters a lot of things.

"(He) did teach me a lot. He taught me that what I had to say wasn't important, that my body was public property, men could touch me however they pleased.

"So when I left school and found myself in a domestic violence relationship, I believed he did it because he loved me."

Barrister Frank Martin said his client had a heart attack in April 2015 after he was charged with the 33 offences, and now lived with a pacemaker.

Mr Martin said the man's wife of 35 years had left him after the charges were laid, had undergone counselling sessions and would continue receiving treatment under the Sex Offenders program while in jail.

He poses a "moderate risk" of re-offending.

The man, 57, will be eligible for parole on July 23, 2018. He pleaded guilty to all charges.

Convictions were recorded.



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