Scout master 'exploited his power' to abuse boys


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

A FORMER scout master who admitted a total of 26 sexual offences against young boys has been jailed for 12 years.

Martyn Tucker, 68, had conducted ‘a deliberate, calculated, sophisticated grooming process’ a judge said.

Tucker knew his day of judgement would come, particularly when the Jimmy Savile scandal came out.

Police finally knocked on his door last summer after one victim – who said Tucker stole his soul – had the courage to come forward after he realised those prosecuted for sex offences in Wrexham children’s homes went back further than the offences committed on him when he was a boy.

Tucker, of Sealand Road, Chester, said that he wanted to come clean.

It emerged in court the scout movement was told of the abuse allegations in the 1970s and while it took statements from a number of boys, the police were never informed.

Officers investigating the matter last year were able to recover those statements from the scout movement headquarters.

The court heard how Tucker abused scouts when he was assistant scoutmaster of the Whitchurch troop in Shropshire. He also abused others while the manager of Foster’s menswear in the town, taking boys to the shop’s changing rooms.

Tucker also took victims to Bristol where he instructed them to indulge in sex acts with another unknown man.

While on a canoe weekend in Llangollen he was joined by an unknown primary school teacher who also indulged in sex acts with the scouts.

He would visit a farm at Pontybodkin in Flintshire, owned by a member of his family at the time, for outdoor activities. But Tucker and the teacher abused scouts there.

Tucker, who worked for the former Alyn and Deeside and Delyn Councils before working as a legal executive dealing in social welfare issues for various Chester solicitors, admitted a total of 26 sexual offences. The charges originally included male rape but prosecuting barrister John Philpotts told the court male rape was not known to the criminal law at the time the offences were committed.

He admitted 12 charges of indecent assault on young boys, nine charges of indecency with a child and five charges of another illegal sexual act. The offences date from 1968 to 1978 on five victims, all young teenagers.

Judge Niclas Parry jailed him for 12 years, ordered him to register as a sex offender for life, and banned him from ever working with children again. He told him the offences involved a grave betrayal of the trust placed in him.

Tucker, he said, got himself into a position where he could exercise control and power over his victims.

There had been “a deliberate, calculated, sophisticated grooming process” to “fulfil your thirst for excitement and thrill seeking” at the expense of his victims.

Victims were taken on outdoor expeditions involving overnight stays which parents quite innocently and trustingly agreed to because of who he was.

“You created safe locations to offend against them, you exploited your power for your own sexual gratification and showed a total disregard for their physical and psychological well being,” he said.

“You arranged to be alone with them out of reach of those who could ensure their safety.”

Some of the boys had been in extreme pain. Tucker was said to be domineering and Mr Parry said the incidents in which other adults had been involved were ‘extremely grave’.

Some victims had since been unable to trust fellow human beings and one victim had told how Tucker’s acts had set him on a path of self-hatred and self-destruction.

Mr Parry said the offences took place between 36 and 46 years ago and only came to light last year as a sea-change in attitude towards historical sexual offences had taken place. He said: “These matters only came to light because of publicity arising from other high profile cases.”

Tucker had caused severe psychological harm to at least one victim, there had been a significant degree of planning, it occurred on a regular basis, it was a great breach of trust and there had been multiple victims. Tucker had also shown some of his victims pornographic material.

But it was accepted he had not committed any offences for 36 years, had led an industrious life, supported his family including a severely disabled step-son and had raised thousands of pounds for charity.

Stephen Edwards, defending, said: “He knew one day judgement day would come. Judgement day has come today.”

He made immediate admissions to the police who arrested him and told them he had been waiting for it to happen. In his interview, Tucker said: “I have been waiting for this, particularly since the Jimmy Savile stuff came out. I hoped it would never happen but I knew one day it would. I deeply regret what I did then. I have lived with it. I ruined my life and I ruined others.”

Mr Edwards said his immediate guilty pleas were a genuine indication of his true remorse. He said: “He is genuinely contrite and sorry for his appalling behaviour and the effect it has had on their lives.”

One victim, who read his own victim impact statement to the court, nodded as his abuser was led away to start his jail sentence.

He told the court the offences on him occurred when he was 12 or 13 and added: “They destroyed my life. At the time, I had never put a foot wrong. In my future I never seemed to put a foot right.

“This man stole my soul and set me on a path of self-hatred and self-destruction for many years.”


MartYn Tucker had offended against young boys in a most horrific way – and then led a model life for the last 40 or so years, Mold Crown Court was told.

The man who first went to the police told how he was allowed to stay in a caravan on a farm at Pontybodkin, near Mold, owned by Tucker’s sister.

Tucker was in his late 20s and the man said that he was aged 12 or 13. He was abused in the caravan and at another house in the Pontybodkin area.

John Philpotts, prosecuting, said that the victim, and other boys, slept in a tent while Tucker slept in a summerhouse.

He gave them cigarettes before sexually abusing them.

Tucker later had sex with him at the farm and also in a wood.

He recalled an incident when he and another boy were taken by Tucker to Bristol where he had been incited to go to bed with another man – a clear suggestion of a paedophile ring, said Mr Philpotts.

Police approached a retired venture scout from the 1970s who recalled that a boy had made allegations against the defendant at the time.

He said that he had notified the scouting authorities and a number of boys gave statements reporting abuse. But it was not reported to the police.

Police spoke to boys who had been in the scout troop in Whitchurch in the late 60s and early 70s, who spoke of being abused at the local Foster’s menswear shop where Tucker was at the time the manager.

They would also visit the farm in Pontybodkin for outdoor activities where abuse took place.

One boy told how he had made a statement to the scout movement at the time but heard no more about it. Another told how he was abused at the shop and at the farm. A further victim recalled when Tucker abused him during a night hike.

One weekend during a canoeing trip to Llangollen Tucker was with a primary school teacher. One scout told how Tucker abused him and encouraged him to perform a sex act on the teacher, who also visited the farm. The boy recalled how he was also abused on a canoe trip to Chester.

Stephen Edwards, defending, said that his client had fully co-operated. He was a man of good character and it had taken 40 years to be brought to justice.

Tucker was full of remorse and genuinely regretted what he had done, he said.

Tucker was born in Cardiff. His father had a successful marine painting business. 

But when he was eight his mother died of cancer, his father went to pieces, became a violent alcoholic and the business was lost.

Tucker was placed in boarding school, was vulnerable suffering from dyslexia and a stammer and was befriended by a male teacher who sexually abused him.

He joined Fosters, became a manager where he abused boys in his shop.

But his offending had stopped suddenly in the 1970s.

He became an expert in social welfare law, worked in Delyn and Alyn and Deeside Councils, and after his retirement in 1999 he worked for a number of law firms in Chester as a legal supervisor of their social welfare departments.


A MAN in his 50s told a court how his abuser had “stolen his soul”.

The man – who read his own victim impact statement at Mold Crown Court – told how defendant Martyn Tucker had set him on a path of self-hatred and self-destruction.

He had “lived in a fog” because of what had happened to him when he was aged about 12 and 13.

The man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, said that he had lost all hope and added: “I am still lost.”

He was the only victim to attend yesterday’s hearing when Tucker received a 12 year prison sentence for 26 sexual offences.

The man sat at the side of the court and often stared at Tucker, who sat in the dock looking straight ahead.

After the prosecution case had been opened by John Philpotts, he went into the witness box and told Judge Niclas Parry: “Please bear with me. I have never done anything like this before.

“At the time these offences were committed, I was maybe 12 or 13 years of age and they destroyed my life.

“Looking back, I never had a chance.

“The damage to me psychologically was buried so deep I didn’t realise it was there and how destructive it had been, until I came forward and had session with a therapist.

“At the time and for some years after I had never put a foot wrong.

“In my future I never seemed to put a foot right.

“This man stole my soul and set me on a path of self-hatred and self destruction that persisted for years.

“I lived in a fog and cared for no one, let alone myself.

“I drifted into drugs and all that involves.

“I had no direction.

“My family were wonderful and they tried to help me but I could never talk about the underlying cause.”

He went on: “I had my future stolen, the ability to form meaningful relationships was beyond me. I could never hope to have a wife and kids and I couldn’t look after myself.

“To this day I am still lost.

“I don’t know what impact these proceedings will have on my mental state, maybe closure will help. I hope so, as nothing else has.”

The man had been unable to work and had been homeless for many years.

“It was terrible,” he said.

He had a fear of authority and could not bear anyone telling him what to do.

The man told how it had been a long time before he could make a complaint – he had done a lot of soul searching before coming forward.

John Philpotts, prosecuting, said that the man approached Cheshire police in 2012 and made a complaint of historical sex abuse.

He was interviewed on camera.

“He said that he was aware from media reports, particularly from the Wrexham area, that convictions had been secured in cases of historical sex abuse older than the incidents he was about to relate.

“Consequently, he had realised that time was not really an issue in making such complaints and, having discussed it with his GP, he had been advised that making a complaint might assist him. So he decided to do so.”

Another man in his 40s told in a statement how it was traumatic and frightening at the time but he had put the matters behind him.

But a third said how Tucker’s acts had caused him “considerable physical and emotional problems” including low self-esteem and a lack of confidence.

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