Children’s home boss faces sentence

Published: Monday 1st December 2014 by The News Editor

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A children’s home boss will be sentenced today for sexually abusing 19 children in his care.

John Allen, 73, was convicted by a jury last week at Mold Crown Court after a lengthy trial of committing historical offences against 18 boys and one girl, aged between seven and 15, at residential properties in and around Wrexham.

The predatory paedophile had no care qualifications when he set up a company named Bryn Alyn Community in 1968, which went on to become a profitable portfolio of 11 homes for children.

One of his victims said the defendant ruled the homes with “an iron fist” as staff and residents were “scared stiff of him”.

Most of the abuse between 1969 and 1990 took place at three homes – Bryn Alyn, Pentre Saeson and Bryn Terion.

Allen, of Foxglove Avenue, Needham Market, Ipswich, had denied all the allegations but was found guilty of 26 indecent assaults, one count of indecency with a child and six other serious sexual assaults.

He was cleared of two serious assaults.

The jury could not reach verdicts on three counts of indecent assault and one count of indecency with a child.

During his trial, the court heard that Allen was convicted in 1996 of indecently assaulting six boys, aged between 12 and 16, at his care homes in the 1970s. He was jailed for six years following an investigation into claims of abuse at various children’s homes in North Wales.

In the same year, the Waterhouse Inquiry was launched to look at the issue of abuse of children in care in the Gwynedd and Clwyd areas and it was published in 2000.

Further complainants came forward in November 2001 and Allen was charged with “serious sexual allegations” relating to a number of boys.

But the case did not proceed because of a technicality which does not exist today.

It is understood a Crown Court judge ruled that Allen would not receive a fair trial because of previous publicity about his convictions.

But he was re-arrested and charged by officers from the National Crime Agency’s ongoing Operation Pallial inquiry into historical sexual abuse at care homes in North Wales.

He will be sentenced at Mold Crown Court.

Published: Monday 1st December 2014 by The News Editor

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