Van Ryn was charged with multiple child sex offences
Van Ryn was charged with multiple child sex offences

Serial child rapist: ‘Any more jail time will destroy me’

Millionaire paedophile Maurice Van Ryn would be "crushed" if he had to serve any longer in jail after pleading guilty to repeatedly raping his 10th victim.

The former Bega Cheese boss is not eligible for parole until he is 73 in 2028 and an extra jail term would "induce a feeling of hopelessness and destroy any expectation of a useful life after his release", his barrister Colin Heazlewood told the District Court today.

Maurice Van Ryn, former Bega Cheese CEO.
Maurice Van Ryn, former Bega Cheese CEO.

The devastated families of his previous victims watched from the public gallery as Van Ryn appeared via videolink from the Hunter Correctional Centre at Cessnock where he is serving at least 13 years six months and a maximum term of 17 years nine months.

Van Ryn bowed his head as Crown prosecutor Michael Fox said the 63-year-old had preyed upon his victim, who was 15 when the abuse began in 2011, and had given him alcohol before sexually assaulting him in the spa while his wife was away, once offering him $50 for oral sex.

The boy had refused the money.

"This behaviour was predatory and calculated to ingratiate himself with the victim to permit the accused to be in a position to carry out the sexual abuse on the child regularly over an extended period," Mr Fox said in written submissions on sentence tendered to the court.

"There is a need for courts to impose a sentence which makes it clear to an offender that if they yield to their sexual impulses towards children they will meet severe punishment."

Van Ryn's home on the state's South Coast was attractive to young males with a tennis court, pool, spa and computer games, Mr Fox said.

The grooming of the teenager was similar to his pattern offending when he sexually assaulted his other nine victims between 2003 to 2014.

Three years ago he lost an appeal against his sentence for those offences after the High Court rejected his argument that it was more important to rehabilitate him than punish him.

It had been a "revelation" to Van Ryn, the father of three adult children and a grandparent, that he no longer had sexual urges towards children after taking anti-libidinal drugs for his "paraphiliac disorder", the High Court had been told.

Today Mr Heazlewood said that it was in Van Ryn's favour that the latest victim had "willingly" attended his home and that the "charges came about because of the relationship which developed and became sexualised".

The latest offending came to light when the victim went into a police station in South Australia in March 2018. Van Ryn pleaded guilty to four counts of aggravated sexual intercourse.

If the teenager had come forward at the same time as the other victims, it was unlikely Van Ryn would have received a longer sentence, Mr said.

But Mr Fox said the additional criminal charges must attract an additional penalty.

He had been sentenced in the District Court by Judge Clive Jeffreys on September 9, 2015 to an aggregate term of imprisonment of 13 years with a non-parole period of seven years.

The minimum term was almost doubled on appeal by the Court of Criminal Appeal, which said Judge Jeffreys' sentence was manifestly inadequate.

Judge Sean Grant said he would sentence Van Ryn next Friday, May 10.

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