A FORMER teacher who sexually abused young boys at a Leeds primary school during the 1970s and and 1980s has been jailed for 15 years.
A court heard Norman Robinson preyed on his victims in his classroom and would often take Polaroid pictures as he carried out the abuse.
One of Robinson’s victims shouted from the public gallery at Leeds Crown Court that he hoped the 76-year-old would die in prison as he was led from the dock after finally being brought to justice.
The court heard Robinson’s victims had suffered years of trauma as they struggled to cope with the vile experiences they had been subjected to.
The parents of his first victim contacted the school’s headmistress after he had told them about the abuse in the late 1970s.
The court heard no action was taken against Robinson at the time after she claimed the youngster had “misinterpreted” things.
The part time judge who sentenced Robinson said that failure to take action gave Robinson the confidence to go on abusing further victims at the school.
Recorder Richard Gioserano said: “You were in a position of power and trust and you knew it.
“You only concern was for your distorted sexual gratification.”
Gerald Hendron, prosecuting, said Robinson also abused one of his victims after taking him back to his flat where he lived at the time on Darfield Road, Harehills.
Another victim was abused regularly after his parents allowed him to be taken on day trips.
Robinson abused the boys after making them stay behind after classes under the pretext of punishment or needing to clear up the classroom.
Some of the sexual abuse took place when the boys were made to go into a cupboard. They were also subject to physical abuse.
On some occasions Robinson was interrupted when another teacher came into the classroom but he was able to conceal the abuse by telling victims to hide.
Robinson, now of Middlecroft Grove, Strensall, near York, pleaded guilty to a serious sexual offence, 11 offences of gross indecency, five of indecent assault, taking indecent photographs of a child, three of making indecent photographs of a child and one of possession of indecent photographs of a child.
The offending took place between 1976 and 1989. The catalogue of offending eventually came to light in 2014 when one of the victims found the courage to report the abuse to police.
Police discovered 544 indecent images of children on his mobile phone and computer equipment seized from his home when he was arrested.
Andrew Semple, mitigating, said Robinson claimed not to be able to remember carrying any of the abuse despite his guilty pleas.
The barrister said it was inevitable that Robinson would be facing a long prison sentence.
Recorder Gioserano told Robinson: “You were their teacher. Parents send their children to school not only to be educated but also in the hope and belief that they will be nurtured, happy and safe.
“In your hands however, those seven boys were not nurtured, happy or safe.
“Instead they were groomed, abused and damaged by you for your own sexual gratification.”
After the case, Det Chief Insp Mark Griffin of Leeds District Safeguarding, said: “This was a thorough and detailed investigation which shows that, despite the passage of time, we will do everything possible to achieve justice for victims.
“A dangerous individual who has committed a number of serious allegations against children is now behind bars where he can consider the consequences of his actions.
“Throughout this case the victims involved have displayed tremendous courage in coming forward and telling detectives what happened to them - despite the passage of time.”