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Parole for 76yo musician jailed for underage sex
A former Hobart children's choir organist has been released from prison after serving just
over half of his sentence on a child sex charge.
Peter Robin Richman, 76, was sentenced to two years in jail for having a sexual relationship
with a 15-year-old girl over several months in the 1980s.
The former Rosny Children's Choir organist has been released on parole because of his remorse
about the victim's suffering and his lack of prior convictions.
The parole board says it also took into account Richman's ill health and his need for an
operation and new medication.
Parole win for child sex offender
Former Rosny Children's Choir organist Peter Robin Richman will be eligible for parole
three months early after successfully appealing against his child sex sentence.
Richman is serving a two-year jail term for having a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old
choir girl over several months in the 1980s.
The 76-year-old was originally told he could not apply for parole until he had served
15 months in jail.
The Full Bench of the Supreme Court in Hobart agreed the non-parole period was excessive
and ordered that he be eligible for release after serving one year.
Music man Richman jailed
Former Rosny Children's Choir organist Peter Robin Richman has been sentenced to two
years jail. He was given the two-year term in the Supreme Court in Hobart today.
Richman will be eligible for parole after 15 months.
The 76-year-old of Lindisfarne had pleaded guilty to maintaining a sexual relationship with
a young person under the age of 17.
A family member said Richman gave the woman "special lessons" while she was a member of the
Rosny Children's Choir between 1979 and 1981.
She said the woman, who was then a minor, suffered profound detrimental effects of the sexual
relations she endured.
The charge relates to incidents involving a girl choir member in Hobart, Richmond Vale and
Rutherglen in the early 1980s.
The author, musician and film producer is best known for his work with the children's choir
and Hobart's Carols by Candlelight, now Carols by the Bay.
The Hobart City Council suspended Richman's involvement with Carols by the Bay last year,
after the charges were laid.
The Mercury (17-5-2011)
Choir leader's girl-sex shame
Former Rosny Children's Choir organist
is in jail while a judge decides what sentence he should serve for a child-sex offence.
Richman appeared in the Supreme Court in Hobart yesterday to plead guilty to maintaining a sexual relationship with a young person.
The charge relates to incidents involving a girl choir member in Hobart, Richmond Vale and Rutherglen in the early 1980s.
Richman, 76, an author, musician and film producer, is best known for his work with the children's choir and Hobart's Carols by Candlelight, now Carols by the Bay.
Crown prosecutor Linda Mason told the court the 15-year-old girl regarded Richman as a father figure and confided her troubles to him.
While giving the girl a ride home after choir practice one night, Richman kissed her and touched her breasts, indecently touched her and made her indecently touch him, she said.
There were similar, repeated incidents, including when Richman played a pornographic video for the girl before engaging in indecent acts with her.
Richman looked away when his victim fought tears as she told the court of the impact the crime had on her.
"It has taken me 30 years to crawl out of the dark hole that the sexual assault put me in," she said. "I have struggled to regain some self-confidence and the slightest little thing can draw me back into the dark place where Peter left me."
Defence lawyer Brian Morgan told the court Richman had been ashamed of his conduct but believed the relationship was consensual.
"In his mind there was never any question that the complainant was an equally willing participant in this," he said.
Mr Morgan said Richman had been associated with thousands of children over the years and had not committed any other offences of this sort.
"Our client is not a sexual predator, he is not a person who used his association with children to groom them for sex," he said.
He said Richman suffered from heart disease, a back condition, gout, narcolepsy and asthma and his risk of re-offending was low.
Many former members of the choir had come forward to support him, Mr Morgan said.
Justice Shan Tennent remanded Richman in custody for sentencing on May 17.
The Mercury (3-5-2011)
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