Paedophile’s girlfriend lied to police in bid to save him from prison

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Chief Inspector Sharon Woolrich

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A TEENAGER lied to police when her paedophile boyfriend was reported for failing to tell a mother of a young child of his sex crime convictions.

Portsmouth Crown Court heard a horrified mum was called police when she read in The News John Burns had been sentenced for breaching restrictions on child contact.

The 26-year-old was convicted of five counts of sexual assault on children under 13 in 2012 and an order was put in place restricting his contact with youngsters.

But last November he was given a suspended jail term by a judge for breaching the sex offences prevention order by baby-sitting.

And on Friday it was revealed in court a mother had read the report in The News and told police Burns and his 19-year-old girlfriend Kirsty Burleton had been in contact with her but she had no knowledge of Burns’ previous convictions.

When police quizzed Burleton, she at first lied and said she had not seen the child or the mother on the day alleged.

But when shown messages proving she had, Burleton then admitted she lied.

Burleton pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice.

Burns admitted breaching a sex offences prevention order by not telling the child’s parent of his convictions.

Now both Burns and Burleton, of Whiteacres Close, Gosport, are facing jail, a judge said.

Recorder Anne Arnold bailed the pair to be sentenced next month.

Addressing them both, she said: ‘They should take no comfort because the likelihood is that they will both suffer sentences of imprisonment.’

As reported, a mother spoke out in November last year over her anger 
Burns was given a nine-month suspended prison sentence.

It followed Burns being released from a hospital order he received in 2012 for molesting the young girls.

Speaking to The News after the latest case the mother who spoke out said: ‘They should be sending him to prison. He was under a suspended sentence for two years.

‘He should be going to jail, there’s no doubt about that.

‘I might finally be able to move on with my life.

‘Everywhere I go is a constant reminder of that scumbag. I’ll never forget it.’

The court heard Burns has since lost his job.

Daniel Reilly, for both defendants, said they had been told by police to be mindful of their safety.

‘Perhaps against that background one can see how she makes the serious error, but the error, to provide the statement,’ he said.

Both defendants will be sentenced at the city’s crown court on April 13 to allow probation time to prepare reports on them.