22 year jail term for Co. Derry man guilty of 'horrific' child sexual abuse

The imposition of a 22-year jail term on a Co. Derry man for 84 sexual abuse offences against 19 children over a ten year period has been welcomed by police.

Detectives from the PSNI's Public Protection Branch welcomed the sentencing of 69 year old, William Patterson, from the Maghera area, at Coleraine Crown Court today, Friday, September 2.

He was sentenced to 22 years relating to sexual abuse offences involving children. He will be placed on the Sex Offenders Register and subject to a Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO).

Patterson was convicted of 84 offences involving 19 children, carried out over a 10 year period.

PSNI welcome sentencing.

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Detective Chief Inspector Kerry Brennan said: “Our Public Protection Branch specialist detectives are trained to investigate this type of crime and we will continue to empower victims to come forward and educate adults on how to spot the signs of abuse.

“Our thoughts today, are with the young victims that this man preyed over for many years and their families. No child should ever have to suffer this type of horrific abuse.

“We want to thank them for their bravery in coming forward and their families for working with detectives to bring this abuser to justice.

“If you are concerned that a child may be being abused, or you have been the victim of sexual abuse. Please come forward to us by calling 101, or in an emergency call 999. Don’t suffer in silence.”