“Despicable, calculating” child sex offender jailed for 26 years

JAILED: John Macpherson
JAILED: John Macpherson
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A Wisbech man has been jailed for 26 years for a total of 13 sexual offences against a child.

The offences committed by John Stephen MacPherson first came to light on 11 October 2015.

This has been the worst case I have investigated in my entire career

DC Scott Miller

A police investigation was started which resulted in MacPherson being charged and remanded at Lincoln Magistrates’ Court.

MacPherson, 61, pleaded not guilty to the offences and stood trial at Lincoln Crown Court on 4 April 2016. The Jury at Lincoln Crown Court found Macpherson guilty of 13 offences.

DC Scott Miller of the specialist Operation Emerald team said: “I’m so proud of the victim and her family for having the courage to come and give evidence at court. Justice has been served.

“This despicable, calculating person isn’t going to be able to cause any more harm. This has been the worst case I have investigated in my entire career”

Speaking after sentencing Detective Superintendent Richard Hatton said: “The most important person in this deeply disturbing case is the young girl who has shown courage and strength beyond her years.

“She has been supported throughout by the Child Independent Sexual violence Advisor (CISVA). I hope the excellent support she has received by everyone will help her as she carries on with her young life.

“The perpetrator has been put in the place he deserves to be and will not be able to offend against children again. In his comments Judge Pini described MacPherson’s defence as one of the most odious and repellent defences he had heard in 35 years working in the criminal justice system.

“This reflects the horrible offending against an innocent child. I am deeply proud of my staff and our colleagues within other agencies for the compassion and professionalism they have shown in this investigation within which the depravity and truly horrible attitude of Macpherson has left me lost for words”

John MacPherson was found guilty of the following offences: Seven counts of sexually assaulting a child under 13, contrary to section 7(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. One count of causing a child to watch a sexual act, contrary to section 12(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. One count of taking an indecent photograph of a child, contrary to section 1(1)(a) of the Protection of Children Act 1978. One count of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity, contrary to section 8(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. Three counts of assaulting a child under 13 by penetration, contrary to section 6(1) of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

Operation Emerald are a team of specially trained officers and experienced detectives committed and dedicated to rape and sexual assault investigation. They work closely with the Spring Lodge Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC), Education staff, Social Services and the Crown Prosecution Service.