A PENSIONER described by a judge as a “positive danger” to young children has been jailed for eight years after he was convicted of a series of sex offences.

Noel Laing was said by The Recorder of Middlesbrough, Judge Simon Bourne-Arton to have abused his victims for his own self interest and gratification.

The 68-year-old was convicted following a trial of five indecent assaults, three counts of sexual activity with a child and causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

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There were shouts of “yes” from the public gallery at Teesside Crown Court as Judge Bourne-Arton handed down the eight year sentence.

Carl Swift, mitigating, said Laing, of Bede Avenue, on the Sherburn Road estate, in Durham, had been of previous good character.

He said: “He suffers from poor and deteriorating health and will suffer in prison given the problems that he has.”

The judge said Laing's poor health had to be set against the health of those who were affected by what he had done.

He said: “The only motivation was your own self interest and gratification.”

Judge Bourne-Arton said Laing's victims were clearly frightened and feared that they would not be believed if they reported the abuse.

As a result it went undetected for many years.

Jailing him, he said: “These are very serious offences and can only be met by a term of imprisonment.”

Laing will have to be on the sex offenders register for life and will also be barred from seeking any employment which may bring him into contact with children aged under 16.

  • We have been asked to point that although Noel Laing's address was given in court as Bede Avenue, on the Sherburn Road estate, in Durham, this was in fact not his permanent home

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