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Paedophile vicar fails in bid for early release from prison cell

Canon Gordon Rideout at a EDCC cheque presentation to the Pound for Joe appeal. 12 December 2008 E50020J_detail. ENGSUS00120140402094141

Canon Gordon Rideout at a EDCC cheque presentation to the Pound for Joe appeal. 12 December 2008 E50020J_detail. ENGSUS00120140402094141

Convicted paedophile vicar Gordon Rideout has had his bid for early release from prison on compassionate grounds refused.

Rideout, who was jailed for sexually abusing children, had his application turned down.

Victims were told of decision to refuse his application by the Ministry of Justice and probation service and have welcomed it.

The vicar, of Wannock Close, Polegate, was jailed for 10 years in May for 36 separate sex offences.

He abused 16 children 
between 1962 and 1973, in Hampshire and Sussex.

One of his victims said she felt anguish at what she called Rideout’s “obvious ploy to manipulate the system” with his application.

Another victim expressed his “utter disgust and disbelief” at the news he had applied for release.

“Did this man ever show any compassion for his young victims - did he ever show any compassion for all of us that had to stand up in court and had our very unhappy childhood laid bare?” he said.

Rideout carried out 34 indecent assaults and two attempted rapes, most of them at Ifield Hall children’s home in Crawley, when he was an assistant curate.

Four of his convictions were for indecent assaults on two girls at the Middle Wallop army base, Hampshire, where he was a padre at St Michael’s Church.

Rideout was recently released from prison to attend hospital on a temporary licence and later returned to jail. The Ministry of Justice said the nature of his hospital treatment was confidential and that it could not discuss individual applications for compassionate release, and medical details were confidential.

A spokeswoman said a request for release on compassionate grounds could be granted if a prisoner had a terminal illness and was likely to die soon, or was bedridden or severely incapacitated.

 

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