Headmaster inflicted reign of terror, court hears

A HEADMASTER at a Suffolk school beat and sexually abused young boys in his care in a reign of terror, a court has heard.

Derek Slade ruled St George’s School in Great Finborough, near Stowmarket, under a harsh regime using excessive corporal punishment which caused pain to his pupils that was “off the scale”, it was alleged.

The 61-year-old would hold “midnight feasts” at his house in the school grounds where he would invite friends and pupils.

There he would subject the boys to horrific sexual assaults, the prosecution claimed.

At his trial at Ipswich Crown Court, which is expected to last around three weeks, Slade has denied six counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, four counts of indecent assault on a male person and five counts of buggery.

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He has pleaded guilty to 15 counts of indecent assault on a male person and four counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

A female juror broke down in tears as prosecutor Andrew Thompson outlined the Crown’s case against Slade, describing some of the serious sexual assaults he is alleged to have inflicted on his victims.

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A few boys, his “particular favourites” were chosen by Slade, for his “sexual exploitation,” Mr Thompson said.

Pupils were caned and beaten with slippers, trainers and a table tennis bat without any padding, he added.

Thirteen of Slade’s former pupils have come forward since the police investigation was launched, detailing alleged assaults which happened between 1978 and 1983.

Slade, who now lives in Farm Road, Burton-on-Trent, was arrested earlier this year in Derbyshire.

See tomorrow’s paper for the full story.

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