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Ex racing driver jailed for abusing teen boy

Douglas Slade, 75, (left) and Christopher Skeaping, 72 (right), members of the Paedophile Information Exchange
Douglas Slade, 75, (left) and Christopher Skeaping, 72 (right), members of the Paedophile Information Exchange

A former racing driver linked to the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) - which campaigned for sex with children to be decriminalised - has been jailed for five years.

Christopher Skeaping, 72, formerly of Hounslow in London, was convicted of one count of indecently assaulting a 15-year-old boy in the 1980s.

Bristol Crown Court heard Skeaping was involved in the former Paedophile Action for Liberation (PAL), which later became the Paedophile Information Exchange.

These were campaign groups in the 1970s and 1980s calling for the age of consent to be lowered to allow sex with children to be legalised.

Judge Euan Ambrose jailed Skeaping, who has previously been imprisoned for abusing teenage boys, for five years and imposed a sexual harm prevention order.

"(The victim) said it was common knowledge that you were interested in boys sexually," the judge told Skeaping, a former racing car driver and mechanic.

"He said that you spoke about the Paedophile Information Exchange, a now notorious organisation, and you spoke about it quite openly.

"He said you spoke quite openly about being into sex with boys, you couldn't understand how it was considered a problem that older men would want to have sexual relationships with children.

"You used to express your views on this in a very crude manner."

Skeaping stood trial at Bristol Crown Court with Douglas Slade, 75, who was jailed for 24 years earlier this month having been convicted of 13 child sex offences.

The court heard Skeaping introduced his victim to Slade, also a member of PAL and PIE, who went on to abuse him.

In 2010, Skeaping was jailed for five years for three offences he committed against one boy aged under 16 in the 1980s and 1990s.

He was sent to prison for seven years and six months in 2012, having been convicted of two offences against a boy aged under 16 in the 1970s.

Mitigating, Rosaleen Collins said there was no evidence Skeaping had continued to offend while in France, where he lived from 1995 to 2007.

"His medical condition is very poor indeed," she added.

Detective Sergeant Paul Melton, of Avon and Somerset Police, said there was evidence Skeaping and Slade were part of a wider network of men interested in sexually abusing children.

"Our investigation into Slade, Skeaping and their associates is ongoing and we believe there will be more victims who haven't yet come forward," he said.

"I'd like to send them a message - we are here to listen and support you. You don't have to suffer in silence. Please contact your local police force or any of the excellent support agencies available and you will be given all the help and support you need."

Anyone with information should call Mr Melton on 101, quoting Operation Falcon, or use the form on Avon and Somerset Police's website.