A former Anglican priest who raped a young girl on the pew of a Canberra church had a long-history of molesting children.
Justice Michael Elkaim on Monday sentenced John Philip Aitchison, 67, to nine years jail on five charges of sexual intercourse with a young person and seven counts of acts of indecency on a young person.
The ACT Supreme Court heard he had been convicted of offences against children in the United Kingdom, NSW, Victoria, and the ACT.
However, he had only served two years behind bars.
Justice Elkaim said the offender had been "dealt with leniently" in the past, on one occasion a NSW court found he had pyschological issues.
"[This] was incorrect. He is unquestionably a paedophile," Justice Elkaim said.
The court heard Aitchison still maintains his innocence and has shown no remorse.
The offender had fought the charges, but was found guilty by ACT Supreme Court jury in April.
The trial heard graphic evidence from Aitchison's victim, who he repeatedly abused between July 1987 and October 1989, when she was about 13 or 15.
In one harrowing account, the woman said she had been practicing her music at the All Saints' Anglican Church in Ainslie when Aitchison told her if she prayed, God might let her see her dead dog.
He then he raped her, while he himself prayed for forgiveness.
Aitchison also raped and molested her in the church hall and at her home.
The woman on Monday read a victim impact statement which described the effects Aitchison's offending had had on her life, including ongoing physical and pyschological issues.
The woman described how music and animals had given her life drive, purpose, and an identity, but Aitchison had taken that away.
"[He] took away the things that gave me comfort, security and happiness at the very point where I was reconstructing myself," she said.
"Worse, he took away my faith, my career and my memories of my best friend, my dog."
"He rewrote who I was meant to be."
Justice Elkaim said he agreed with the woman's description of Aitchison as "effortlessly careless, casual, commanding, authoritarian, and coolly arrogant."
The judge said the offences had a number of aggravating features, including taking advantage of his position as a religious official and breaching the victim's trust.
Justice Elkaim found Aitchison would be unlikely to reoffend "if only as a result of his age and the limited access he will have to potential victims".
Aitchison will be eligible for parole in April 2023.
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