Operation Pallial: Connah’s Quay man sentenced to 11 years in prison for sex offences against young boys
Five men including a former DJ from Connah’s Quay have been convicted of a total of 34 sexual offences against young boys in North Wales have today been sentenced to a total of 43 years in prison following a National Crime Agency investigation, Operation Pallial
Their victims were five boys aged between 10 and 15 years old who were abused by a predatory ring of paedophiles operating in the Wrexham area during the 1970s and 1980s.
The men were convicted following an independent investigation by the National Crime Agency, Operation Pallial, and a trial at Mold Crown Court earlier this year.
Marc Roy Norry, aged 55 – a former local radio presenter from Connah’s Quay, was found guilty of six offences, (five of indecent assault and one buggery). He was sentenced to 11 years in prison.
George Neil Phoenix – a former bus driver from Wrexham, was found guilty of one count of sexual abuse. He was sentenced to three and a half years in prison.
David Lightfoot – aged 72, a publican in Wrexham in the 1980s, from Ellesmere Port, Cheshire was found guilty of nine offences (six indecency/indecent assault, two of buggery and one of attempted buggery). He was sentenced to ten years in prison.
Eddie Huxley – aged 70, a former Wrexham civil servant from Maidenhead, Berkshire. Huxley, was found guilty of two counts of indecent assault. He received four and a half years in prison.
Gary Cook – (also known as Mark Grainger), aged 64, a former professional wrestler from Leicester was found guilty of 16 counts of sexual abuse and sentenced to 14 years in prison.
National Crime Agency
Ian Mulcahey, NCA Senior Investigating Officer, said those convicted had acted as “a predatory group of paedophiles, taking advantage of vulnerable young boys.”
“The vast majority of abuse took place primarily at the home of one of the defendants, Gary Cook, in Brymbo. The five boys were young, vulnerable, sometimes isolated by family circumstances and manipulated by this group. They were no doubt chosen for these reasons and were groomed using a variety of treats including alcohol, car trips, pornography and above all attention. They were sexually abused and passed around by the group,” added Mr Mulcahey.
“The range of occupations of these men had could not have been more different, but their real common interest lay in the abuse of young children. Their grooming was carefully planned and continued over the period of the victim’s childhoods. “The victims in this case have been brave in coming forward, firstly to speak to the Operation Pallial team and latterly to give evidence at court and I would like to personally thank them for the courage they have shown,” he added.
Ed Beltrami, Chief Crown Prosecutor, CPS Wales said:
“This abhorrent paedophile gang targeted young and vulnerable boys in a systematic and devious manner. The vulnerability of the victims made them easy prey for the gang. “Their fortitude in coming forward to report what happened to them has led to these convictions. Whilst the criminal justice process cannot put right the wrongs committed by these individuals, we hope that the victims will take some solace in knowing that their abusers have been brought to justice,” he added.
Safeguarding and maintaining a victim-focused investigation is an important part of the investigation and appropriate support is being offered to all victims of crime through Conwy Social Services on behalf of all local authorities in North Wales.
Operation Pallial is an independent investigation into past abuse in the care system in North Wales being conducted at the request of the Chief Constable of North Wales, Mark Polin.
The email address for members of the public to use to contact Operation Pallial is: firstname.lastname@example.org The public telephone number for the Incident Room is: 0800 118 1199
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