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Man jailed for sexual assaults on young boys in 1980s

|News, Sexual offences

A man who was a former verger has been jailed for indecent assaults on two boys under 16s from 1969 to 1987.

Clive McCleester, 77, who appeared at Inner London Crown Court today, was sentenced to 16 years imprisonment for sexually assaulting two teenage boys.

The first victim reported that he was sexually assaulted by McCleester at a boarding School in Hampshire from 1969 to 1970. At the time, McCleester was a child welfare supervisor at the school.

The second victim reported that he was sexually abused by McCleester while a chorister at Southwark Cathedral from 1984 to 1987.

McCleester was a head verger at the Cathedral at the time of the offending. The abuse took place at McCleester's flat.

The two victims reported the case in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

On 26 June, McCleester pleaded guilty to 10 counts of sexual abuse of 2 young boys between 1968 and 1987.

Momata Matin, Senior Crown Prosecutor from the Rape and Serious Sexual Offences Unit in London South said: "McCleester flagrantly abused his position of authority and trust within the communities he served to commit vile offences against young boys, leaving many of them with lifelong trauma.

"The abuse has clearly had a profound impact on the victims. I would like to highlight the bravery of the victims and thank them, the witnesses, and the prosecution team, for helping bring McCleester to justice.

'The first victim, sadly passed away after giving police his evidence, so was unable to hear the guilty verdict. I hope his families can have a sense of peace knowing that justice has been finally served.

“Sexual offences are some of the most traumatic and complex cases to prosecute, and the CPS will bring offenders to justice where there is the evidence."

Notes to editors

  • Clive McCleester (D.O.B.: 05 August 1945) has no previous conviction.
  • Momata Matin is a Senior Crown Prosecutor from the Rape and Serious Sexual Offences Unit in London South.

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