Former teacher Richard Alston from Bury St Edmunds guilty of molesting 11-year-old boy
PUBLISHED: 13:23 27 August 2015 | UPDATED: 13:56 27 August 2015
A former remedial school teacher from Suffolk and long-term partner of one of the founders of the Paedophile Information Exchange has been found guilty of molesting an 11-year-old boy, it can be revealed.
Richard Alston, 70, of Vinery Road, Bury St Edmunds, met the victim while working at Cavendish School for “maladjusted boys” in Greenford, Middlesex, in the late 1970s.
Together with his partner, Peter Righton, Alston forced the youngster to watch pornography and then perform sex acts on him.
It was the investigation into Righton, who was convicted of importing child pornography in 1992, that led to MP Tom Watson using parliamentary privilege in 2012 to allege that there was “clear intelligence” of a VIP child sex abuse ring.
Righton was also a founding member of the Paedophile Information Exchange - a notorious group set up in the 1970s that campaigned to lower the age of consent.
He and Alston were together for 40 years and lived in Thornham Magna after Righton’s conviction.
Although Alston denied indecently assaulting the schoolboy, while giving evidence he conceded it was “possible” his lover may have done.
Giving evidence, Alston explained that he realised he was gay as a young adult, and met Righton - 19 years his senior - when he was just 16 years old.
Despite being cleared of a number of offences, he was convicted of incidents that took place when Righton was present and a participant.
A jury at Southwark Crown Court in London cleared Alston of molesting the youngster on school grounds and during a camping trip when he was alleged to have crept into his tent after “story time”.
The verdicts were reached last week, but can only be reported now for legal reasons.
Alston, who was in a position of trust as a teacher, was found guilty of one count of indecent assault and one count of indecency with a child, showed no emotion as he was convicted.
Jurors found that he and Righton groomed the schoolboy after he began visiting them at their flat, plying him with alcohol and buying him gifts such as cigarettes and toys.
On one occasion Righton - who died in 2007 - gave the boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, a pair of silk swimming trunks, which he asked him to “parade” in front of himself and Alston.
Alston was found to have made the schoolboy watch pornographic films and then ask him to perform sex acts on him and Righton.
The court heard that their friend Charles Napier - now a convicted paedophile - would also be present for some of these viewings.
Alston was cleared of four counts of indecent assault and two counts of indecency with a child. The jury was unable to reach verdicts on one count each of the same offences.
The verdicts can now be reported after the CPS took the decision in private not to pursue a retrial on the outstanding charges.
In January 1979 in Aberdeen, Scotland, he was admonished - the equivalent of a caution in English law - after admitting one count of lewd, indecent, libidinous practices, namely placing his hand on a boy’s thigh in the cinema.
Alston is due to be sentenced on September 28.
Last December, Napier, was jailed for 13 years for carrying out hundreds of sexual assaults on young boys.
He was convicted of conducting a “campaign of abuse” at the school where he worked in the late 1960s and early 1970s, grooming and assaulting 21 victims aged as young as eight on scores of occasions.
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