Sex abuse teacher could be released

A VICTIM of serial sex abuser Derek Cable spoke of his anger last night after it emerged the jailed music teacher could be back on the streets within weeks.

By Danielle Nuttall

A VICTIM of serial sex abuser Derek Cable spoke of his anger last night after it emerged the jailed music teacher could be back on the streets within weeks.

Former bandleader Cable, who previously taught music at Stowmarket Middle School, could be released from prison in September after serving just half of a four-year sentence for sexual offences against teenagers during the 1970s and 1980s.

Cable, 64, was convicted by a jury in September 2003 of ten offences of indecent assault and eight of gross indecency against five boys.

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The abuse had occurred while Cable was music director and conductor of the Stowmarket School Concert Band, which he founded in 1961.

Antony Arnold - one of the witnesses at the trial who told how he had been forced to walk naked while staying with the former teacher as a child - told the East Anglian Daily Times he had now been notified by victim liaison officers that Cable had officially applied for bail.

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If granted, Cable is likely to be released in September.

Mr Arnold, who is in the process of constructing a written protest against Cable's early release, said last night: “I'm angry because I know this has just been a drop in the ocean for him. People are getting a lot more for much less than that.

“We have a life sentence and he gets out as a very wealthy free man. I knew he would come out but it's still a let down.

“It was a lovely feeling knowing he was in prison and now we won't know where he is.

“I live with what he did every single day, continually. It doesn't drive me crazy but it's at the forefront of my mind at every waking moment.

“We are all shocked he is probably coming out so quickly. You can do all the preparation you want but it doesn't make it totally alright.”

The 37-year-old added: “The justice system is stupid. What's going on? My ideal sentence for him would have been life.”

A spokeswoman for the Prison Service said it could not comment on individual cases last night.

Father-of-two Mr Arnold, who now lives in Norwich and works as an entertainer, said he had been told one of the conditions of Cable's release might be that an exclusion zone be placed around the city so he would be unable to bump into him.

But the former band member believes once Cable's release licence expires, he will return to Singapore, where he was living before his arrest.

Cable's band played throughout Europe and the US and gained a prestigious reputation.

But at his trial at Norwich Crown Court, prosecutors said Cable had a “dark side” and plied boys with money, drink and cigarettes and left magazines about showing pictures of naked men and women.

The website Friends Reunited played a major role in helping to uncover Cable's sex crimes.

It was through the website that one of his victims contacted an old school friend, which prompted him to tell the police.

Cable was arrested in April 2002 when he returned to Suffolk from his home in Singapore for a band reunion.

A prosecution followed and Cable, formerly of Edgecombe Road, Stowmarket, was charged with two allegations of indecency.

As more victims came forward, Cable was finally charged with 21 offences of indecent assault and indecency against five boys, all of which he denied.

A jury found him guilty of ten offences of indecent assault and eight of gross indecency.

At least six of Cable's alleged victims - including Mr Arnold - approached a solicitor with a view to sue him for the suffering he had caused them as teenagers and a case for three of them was prepared.

But the case hit a brick wall because the allegations made against Cable were historical, and none of the victims were able to afford to cover the cost of legal action.

Mr Arnold said he remained optimistic Cable would one day be faced with a compensation bill for their pain.

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