POLITICS

Court hears Gordon Stuckless lured young boys with the help of an accomplice

01/27/2015 12:49 EST | Updated 03/29/2015 05:59 EDT
TORONTO - The man at the centre of the Maple Leaf Gardens sex abuse scandal had a system to lure young boys that sometimes involved working with an accomplice, a Toronto court heard Tuesday.

One of Gordon Stuckless's victims testified in a pre-sentencing hearing that the former stadium usher acted in tandem with the late John Paul Roby, another convicted child abuser who worked at the arena.

The man, whose identity is under a publication ban, said he ran into Roby after getting separated from friends during a Marlies game at Maple Leaf Gardens in the early 1970s.

WARNING: CONTENTS MAY DISTURB SOME READERS.

Roby contacted Stuckless on a walkie-talkie and arranged for them to meet in a curtained-off area, he testified.

"He said, 'I have another one,'" the man, who was almost 11 years old at the time, recalled on the stand.

Both Stuckless and Roby forced him to perform fellatio on them, saying it was something "all the older kids" did, he said.

They then warned him not to tell his parents and said that if he came back, they might be able to get him in for free, he told the court.

Crown attorney Kelly Beale said she wants the testimony considered as an aggravating factor in sentencing Stuckless, who pleaded guilty last year to 100 charges related to the sexual abuse of 18 boys decades ago.

"He pled guilty to watered-down facts," which didn't include the allegations heard Tuesday, she said outside court.

Judge Mara Greene is expected to rule on the new testimony early next week, though Beale said it could be up to a year before Stuckless is sentenced.

Stuckless was also found guilty in the fall of two charges of gross indecency linked to two of the 18 victims but acquitted on two counts of buggery — an old charge referring to sodomy.

Greene explained in her decision that the charge of buggery applies only to anal intercourse, and said there was reasonable doubt as to what Stuckless had used to penetrate the two victims.

Stuckless had contested the indecency and buggery charges despite admitting in his plea last April that he committed other types of abuse against the same two victims.

He also fought four other charges but those were withdrawn during trial.

Stuckless pleaded guilty in 1997 to sex assaults on two dozen boys while he was an usher at Maple Leaf Gardens.

In 2013, police announced fresh charges against him in alleged incidents dating back decades.

Beale said she also intends to seek a dangerous offender designation, which would allow the court to impose an indefinite sentence on Stuckless. Roby was designated a dangerous offender and died in prison.

Stuckless' lawyer, Ari Goldkind, has said there is no justification for the dangerous offender label, since his client has abided by the law since his previous convictions and voluntarily undergoes chemical castration.