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Ex-schoolteacher jailed for systematic sexual abuse of children

|News, Sexual offences

A 76-year-old ex-teacher has been sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment for sexually abusing 19 young boys. 

At one school, Christopher Pickup sexually abused boys in the classroom, school changing rooms, the swimming baths, the school bus and on overnight school trips between 1968 and 1974.

When he moved to a new school, he abused more boys in his office in the middle of busy public areas, such as classrooms and badminton courts between 1977 and 1983.

The offences came to light when several old school friends attended a funeral in 2019. As they started to reminisce about their school days, they realised they had common experiences of sexual abuse at the hands of their teacher Mr Pickup.

One of the men attended Oldham police station to make a formal complaint in August 2019. In the following few months, he was followed by seven of his former schoolmates.

When Christopher Pickup was charged with those initial sexual offences, it was reported in the local press which in turn led to nine more men coming forward.

Following a trial at Manchester Minshull St Crown Court which concluded in August 2022, a jury found him guilty of 37 counts of indecent assault on a male.

The court also ordered Christopher Pickup to pay £58,750 prosecution costs.

Jennifer Mansell for the CPS said: "Christopher Pickup abused his position of trust as a respected schoolteacher to systematically abuse boys in his care over a 12-year period. In his arrogance he even abused some of them in plain sight.

"By not admitting his guilt he made them relive that awful abuse during a full trial. After careful consideration of the evidence we presented to the jury, they found him guilty of all the offences he faced.

"I would like to commend all those men for their immense courage they have shown throughout proceedings which has been crucial in bringing Christopher Pickup to justice for the sickening offences he committed all those years ago." 

Notes to editors

  • Jennifer Mansell is a Senior Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West.

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