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Masseuse Qinghu An guilty of more indecent assaults on clients

Qinghu An pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting his female massage clients.

A convicted sex offender living in Geelong on a temporary visa was yesterday given his second suspended jail sentence in 12 months for indecently assaulting his female massage clients.
Qinghu An, 57, of Barrabool Rd, Highton, who came to Australia from China in 2011 on a temporary visa, pleaded guilty in Geelong Magistrates’ Court yesterday to seven counts of indecent assault.
The court heard that in June last year, Qinghu had been running a Drysdale massage clinic, when he was found guilty of two counts of indecently assaulting a female client.
On that occasion he was convicted, sentenced to three months in jail, suspended for 12 months, fined $1000 and placed on the sex offenders register for eight years.
Yesterday, police prosecutor, Sergeant Peter Beard said that following the publicity of the first case, five other former clients contacted police with similar complaints about Qinghu.
Sgt Beard said all of the offending occurred in 2012 when each of the female victims attended the clinic for massages to their necks and shoulders.
He described how, on each occasion, Qinghu would begin by massaging their necks and shoulders while they sat in a chair.
“He would then ask them to remove their top and bra and lie on a treatment table, where the massage would extend to their backs and lower backs,” Sgt Beard said.
Sgt Beard said each of the victims told how Qinghu moved his hands along the sides of their breasts, massaged across the top of one victim’s breasts, along the inner thigh of another, and in and around the buttocks of yet another.
Michael Brugman, for Qinghu, said his client was forced to close his business as a result of the publicity and was still undergoing psychiatric treatment for mental health issues.
Mr Brugman said his client was fearful of retribution and being returned to his family in China.
“He used to be a proud and successful man in China,” Mr Brugman said.
Magistrate Barry Schultze described the offending as opportunistic and predatory but also accepted Qinghu had been “severely impacted by the consequences of his offending and the publicity surrounding it”.
“Of course the victims suffered too,” Mr Schultze said.
Qinghu was convicted and sentenced to 12 months jail, suspended for two years.
He was also placed on the sex offenders register for life which is a mandatory requirement under current legislation.
A spokesman for the Minister said the Department of Immigration and Border Protection was aware of the matter.

www.geelongadvertiser.com.au (5-6-2014)
Karen Matthews

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