NEWS

Ex-scout leader David Wolfe sentenced to 2 years for sex crimes

03/21/2014 10:58 EDT | Updated 05/21/2014 05:59 EDT
Former New Brunswick scout leader David Wolfe has been sentenced to two years in prison for sex-related charges involving four boys decades ago.

Wolfe, 68, who now lives in Halifax, was sentenced in Moncton provincial court on Friday.

He previously pleaded guilty to four counts of indecent assault, dating back to the 1960s, when he was an assistant scout master in the Riverview area.

One of the victims, who was in court to read his victim impact statement, said he is happy with the sentence; that two years is longer than he expected.

The man, whose name is protected by a publication ban imposed on Friday, said the case also shows other molesters that time will not protect them from their evil deeds.

Judge Irwin Lampert said it is unusual to have a case before the courts when the offences happened so long ago — 50-plus years.

He sentenced Wolfe to two years on each count, to be served concurrently, based on a joint recommendation of the Crown and defence.

Wolfe's name will also be on the national sex offender registry for 10 years.

Wolfe abused as youth

Lampert said he considered several substantial mitigating factors in imposing the sentence, including the fact that Wolfe suffers from a heart condition and has already experienced the punishment of the case being publicized.

In addition, it was Wolfe's first offence, the incidents occurred when Wolfe was in his early 20s and there are no suggestions the behaviour carried into his later life, and his guilty pleas saved the victims from "the horror" of reliving that time in their lives, Lampert said.

The judge also noted that Wolfe was a victim of sexual assault himself as a young person.

 The latest victim came forward in January, after Wolfe pleaded guilty to the other charges.

The first victim went to Codiac Regional RCMP in 2011, after he saw an investigative series by CBC News on sexual abuse within Scouts Canada.

The investigation by CBC-TV's the fifth estate revealed that scout leaders abused about 340 children from the 1940s until present.

It also found that Scouts Canada kept a "confidential list" of pedophiles barred from the organization and had also signed confidentiality agreements with child sex abuse victims.

About two months after the documentary aired, Scouts Canada issued a blanket apology to any former scouts who had been sexually abused by the group's volunteer leaders.

The youth organization also announced it had hired an outside company to review its past records and appointed an expert panel to examine whether its current child protection policies are working.

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