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Chelmsford man who said abuse turned him into paedophile jailed

By Essex Chronicle  |  Posted: January 25, 2013

By James Drummond james.drummond@essexchronicle.co.uk

child abuser:  Chris Denning, the former radio 1 DJ who was jailed for producing child pornography

child abuser: Chris Denning, the former radio 1 DJ who was jailed for producing child pornography

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A CHELMSFORD engineer who claimed that sex abuse by his uncle – veteran Radio 1 DJ Chris Denning – turned him into a paedophile has been jailed for 18 months.

Paul Anthony Denning pleaded guilty to a string of sex assaults over a six-year period in the 1970s on a girl of just five when they began.

But the 59-year-old claimed he was turned into a sex offender by his father's stepbrother, Chris Denning, who is currently serving a five-year prison sentence in Slovakia for child sex offences.

His counsel, Jonathan Lennon, told Chelmsford Crown Court last Thursday: "He was abused by his father's stepbrother – Chris Denning, the first Radio 1 DJ.

"It all came to light before the Jimmy Savile affair.

"It had a devastating effect upon him.

"He's moved on and got on with his life but that is now shattered."

He said victims of abuse often would turn into abusers themselves.

The charges involved offences in what was described by the judge as a "campaign of abuse".

The court was told that Denning, of Sawkins Avenue, Chelmsford, was 16 when he began committing the offences.

Jailing him, Judge Karen Walden-Smith told the court: "Matters were complicated by the fact that at or around that time you were being abused by your own uncle and your sexual boundaries were blurred considerably."

But, as she jailed Denning, who had been a carer for his mother, 90, and his 88-year-old father and had been in a stable relationship, the judge added: "These offences are of a very grave nature committed on a young child over a number of years.

"This was a gross abuse and a campaign of abuse.

"Although I recognise you were the victim of abuse."

She said that Denning's offending had had a devastating effect on his victim.

"It was a persistent course of sexual offending," she added.

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