Former cathedral director of music showed children porn before sexually assaulting them

Ely Cathedral Picture: CITIZENSIDE.COM

Ely Cathedral Picture: CITIZENSIDE.COM - Credit:

A former assistant director of music at St Edmundsbury Cathedral is waiting to be sentenced after admitting sexual offences against children.

Scott Farrell, 48, who worked at the cathedral in Bury St Edmunds from 1993 to 1999, appeared in Cambridge Magistrates' Court on Tuesday where he pleaded guilty to historic offences.

Farrell, who later went on to become director of music for Rochester Cathedral and assistant organist for Ely Cathedral, admitted three counts of gross indecency with a boy under 16, two counts of voyeurism and one count of taking indecent images of a child committed between 1999 and 2001.

Farrell has been released on bail while he awaits a date for sentencing at crown court.

The Diocese of Saint Edmundsbury and Ipswich said there had been no claims of abuse relating to the time during which he served as assistant director of music at St Edmundsbury Cathedral.

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However, David Butcher, safeguarding advisor at the Diocese of Saint Edmundsbury and Ipswich, said: "The diocese takes safeguarding very seriously and would certainly be responsive to anyone who came forward now.

"I know sometimes these things can take years for someone to take the courage to report things and we know that takes a great deal of strength for somebody to be able to do that if they have been in that position themselves."

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Police started to investigate Farrell, of High Street, Wouldham, near Rochester in Kent, after allegations were reported to them in November 2017.

Police said that on one occasion Farrell invited children back to his flat and would show them pornographic images and videos before carrying out sexual acts.

Farrell was arrested and suspended from his role working as the director of music at Rochester Cathedral in Kent.

Farrell's electronic devices were seized, which uncovered voyeuristic images and videos believed to have been taken on hidden cameras in bathrooms and bedrooms, some at his own flat, others at different homes.

In addition to this, 135 category C indecent images (category A being the most severe) were found which Farrell had taken himself.

Detective Constable Claire Bamford, from Cambridgeshire Constabulary's Child Abuse Investigation and Safeguarding Unit, said: "This has been a lengthy investigation spanning several counties and involved tracking down a number of victims and witnesses.

"I would like to thank the victims for coming forward and showing great bravery in speaking out about the abuse they suffered at the hands of Farrell.

"Hopefully this result will provide them with some level of closure and they can begin to put this part of their lives behind them."

To make a report about a concern in relation to sexual offences or child abuse call police on 101 to speak with a member of staff.

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