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Rochdale social worker convicted of child sex abuse offences

By Kieran Chatteron

Published In: Child Abuse

On 29 June 2018, James Peter Gavin was sentenced to 17 years behind bars for indecent sexual assault and attempted rape. This followed a trial Manchester Crown Court at which Gavin had pleaded “not guilty” to all offences.

Gavin was a social worker in the Rochdale area and used his position of trust and access to vulnerable young boys in care to indulge his own sexual interest. The victim who gave evidence against Gavin was one such boy under the supposed care and control of Gavin. The abuse took place over a long period of time and at various locations. The victim in this case was abused while taken away from his foster parents and also while placed at Foxholes Children’s home.

Gavin was arrested in 2016 after the victim came forward to the police. After lengthy investigations and delays in the Court process, the case finally came to trial at Manchester Crown Court in April 2018. He denied all charges of abuse. The jury heard of his previous convictions for similar offences in the 1970s while he was volunteering with the scouts. There were a total of 11 offences on the charge sheet and Gavin was found guilty of the most serious five. In sentencing Gavin , the Judge praised the courage and determination of his victim.

We represent victims of Gavin who are now able to bring a claim for compensation against Rochdale Borough Council and would be happy to talk to others in confidence who were abused either by Gavin or while in care in Rochdale. To speak to a member of the team, please call 0800 138 4700 or email


Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice, and the law may have changed since this article was published. Readers should not act on the basis of the information included and should take appropriate professional advice on their own particular circumstances.

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Kieran has worked in the legal sector for 15 years.  He is a Solicitor in our Child Abuse Compensation team.

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