Carer jailed for child sex binge

Posted by on Apr 7, 2012 in Women Behaving Badly | No Comments

Townsville Bulletin

November 10,2004

 

http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,11340153%255E26462,00.html

 

Carer jailed for child sex binge

By Malcolm Weatherup

 

A FORMER victims of crime support counsellor who took in homeless young girls she met at church functions was jailed yesterday for sexual offences against one of the children in her care.

Naomi Geia, 40, opted at the last minute not to go to trial.

Instead she pleaded guilty before Judge Julie Dick in the District Court to one count of maintaining an indecent relationship with a child under 16 and nine counts of indecent dealing.

Crown prosecutor Angus Edwards said the offences occurred on Palm Island and in Townsville between 1994 and 1996, and involved a girl who was 12 at the time of the first offence.

The complainant is now 21 and recently made a statement to police about the matter.

Mr Edwards said Geia had been a well-respected member of the island community and had been regularly used by police as a victim support counsellor.

She would take in troubled young girls at her home, many of whom she met at Gospel Outreach church functions.

The complainant told police Geia started sexual overtures and then overt acts in1994, although the child made it clear she had “absolutely no interest” in that sort of thing.

Thecourt was told that although only 12, the child – who had other issues in her background – got drunk and tried to kill herself, but that did not deter her carer.

Mr Edwards said even when the child started to go to boarding school in Townsville, she was the subject of Geia’s sexual attentions.

On one occasion Geia and the child spent a weekend in a Rosslea motel, where several acts occurred. On another occasion a similar situation happened at the house of Geia’s brother in Townsville.

Mr Edwards said although the child made it clear she did not like what was happening, she was under pressure to maintain silence because the family was in a position of power on the island.

The offending occurred on 15 to 18 occasions over 12 to 18 months, the court was told.

Barrister Mark Donnelly, for Geia, asked Judge Dick to take into consideration Geia’s lack of criminal history, an excellent work record which included managing three of the airlines servicing Palm Island, and her extensive community work, particularly in the area of drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

“My client is a regular church goer and I ask you to regard these matters as an uncharacteristic aberration in an otherwise upstanding community life,” Mr Donnelly said.

Judge Dick told Geia she had since shown she knew how badly she had behaved with a child who came to her with problems and seeking help.

“You let this child down in the most serious way and you let yourself down in the same serious way,” she said.

Judge Dick sentenced Geia to three years’ jail, but ordered that she be released after serving 10 months, the remainder of the time suspended for five years.

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