Former Shropshire choirmaster jailed for indecently assaulting young boys

A former Shropshire choirmaster has received a 20 month prison sentence for indecently assaulting a child 40 years ago.

The historic abuse came to light when John Derrett, a music teacher, was arrested for possession of indecent images of children last year.

During a police interview he confessed that he had sexually abused three boys from November 1977 to November 1980 while working in the Whitchurch area.

The prosecuting barrister Mr Robert Edwards, told the court: “In December 2016 the defendant was arrested by police in Humberside as attention had been drawn to him over concerns that he was in possession off indecent images of children. He was subsequently prosecuted and jailed for 12 months.

“During the course of that interview he volunteered that he was responsible for historic offences. He disclosed that he had been a church choir leader and the offences were while he had been working in schools in the Shropshire area.

“He gave details of three children, all would now be adults. Only one of them them was traced and it is only he who has made a statement of complaint.”

At the hearing in Shrewsbury Crown Court, Mr Edwards said that the victim recalled that he was aged 13 to 15 when he was assaulted on a number of occasions when they were alone in Derrett’s home.

Derrett met the victim through choir rehearsals and later offered him music lessons. The victim described the offences as "occasional and sporadic".

Mr Bernard Porter, defending, said Derrett admitted that he was attracted to young boys and that he knew it was “grossly illegal, but it seemed to be the way he was wired, it certainly wasn’t a lifestyle choice”.

Read more at: https://www.shropshirestar.com/news/crime/2018/07/04/former-shropshire-choir-master-jailed-for-indecent-assault/

If you, or a loved one, have been affected by sexual abuse, please do not hesitate to contact our team of experienced lawyers who will be happy to speak to you about whether it may be possible to bring an abuse claim.


Charles has considerable specialist experience in pursuing claims for compensation for those who have been abused in childhood. His specific expertise means that he is recognised locally, nationally and internationally for his work which has taken him all over the world including, USA, Australia and New Zealand.

He is also recognised for his significant involvement in the high profile litigation against St Georges School (Anglemoss Limited) and Cyntwell High School. These cases involved a staggering number of individuals who pursued those responsible whom despite heavily defending the claims brought against them settled by way of out of court settlements.

Charles regularly features in local and national press and he is often asked to provide his professional opinion and commentary on relevant abuse law issues and developments on radio and television broadcasts. Such broadcasts include BBC South Today, BBC Wales, ITV and ITN News.

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Charles obtained his Law degree at Kingston University, before successfully completing his Legal Practice Course. He trained and qualified with Verisona Law beginning his specialism in the field of child abuse claims. He received his higher rights of Audience in 2012 making him one of the youngest Solicitor-Advocates in the country who is able to represent his clients in the High Court. Charles is head of the abuse team who collectively have secured compensation for hundreds of victims of abuse.

He began diversifying in to other aspects of abuse law and his team are one of the very few in the country who specialise in claims against social services.

He is involved in complex group action litigation and also represents a number of individuals and who are pursuing private companies, local authorities and perpetrators in pursuit of their justice.

Charles has strong contacts with some of the most prominent barristers who advise on abuse claims including a number of QC’s. He also has robust connections with highly qualified expert witnesses he instructs in support of those who he represents.

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