Northampton man accused in child sex trial gave 'lectures' to schools about turning his life around during the time the alleged abuse took place, court hears

Nicholas and Joan Taylor deny 103 charges that included sexual abuse against children, supplying class A drugs to others and rape.
Nicholas and Joan Taylor deny 103 charges that included sexual abuse against children, supplying class A drugs to others and rape.

A Northampton man accused of carrying out dozens of depraved sex acts on children gave lectures to schools on being a "reformed criminal," a trial has heard.

Nicholas Taylor, 47, of Briar Hill, stands accused of 73 offences, mainly involving sexual acts against children, in a trial which commenced yesterday at Leicester Crown Court.

The co-accused, his wife Joan, 43, faces 30 charges - some of which the couple are alleged to have carried out together.

Yesterday the court heard how the alleged victims were reportedly given crack cocaine and gradually induced into carrying out sex acts with either of the defendants in order to fuel their drug habit.

But prosecutor David Herbert QC, also detailed the answers self-lablled "hard man" Nicholas Taylor gave under police interview when he was first arrested on suspicion of the offences in 2006.

When officers quizzed him about taking crack cocaine, he denied it, saying he was a "reformed character”.

"He was involved in giving talks to schools about the dangers of taking drugs. He had been on TV and in local newspapers talking about how he was a reformed character," Mr Herbert QC, said.

"He said he could not afford to be taking drugs."

However, the court heard how a sample of his hair taken by police tested positive for crack cocaine. This, he said could have gotten into his hair because his wife Joan was smoking it at the time.

When officers asked him whether he had carried out the sexual offences he was accused of, he claimed it was a "big conspiracy, motivated by compensation”.

He told police: "Everything you say about me and my wife is untrue," Mr Herbert QC told the court.

"I won't forget this, I won't let this slide. Whoever has done me wrong or my wife wrong will pay for this, even if it takes me 10 or 20 years."

Earlier in the hearing the court heard how wife Joan had already pleaded guilty to nine of the 39 charges originally put to her.

Nicholas Taylor, the court also heard, was previously convicted for gross indecency and sexual activity with a boy. On his record are also five counts of sexual assault relating to a girl.

When Joan Taylor was first interviewed by police in 2006 she admitted working as a prostitute and admitted her husband was "demanding, controlling and very violent”.

She also claimed that she was often made to act as a lookout for her husband when he took crack cocaine, in order to keep his reputation as a reformed criminal intact.

Nicholas Taylor denies 10 counts of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, 11 of sexual activity with a child, five of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, one of indecent assault, six offences of assault by penetration, 13 counts of rape, 13 charges of indecency with a child, one of taking an indecent photograph, three of causing a child to watch sexual activity, an attempted rape, six of supplying Class A drugs, one of child cruelty, one of assault and one of another serious sexual offence.

His wife has pleaded not guilty to three counts of engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a child, four of sexual activity with a child, eight of rape, one of sexual assault, six of indecency with a child, two of taking an indecent photograph and six of supplying drugs.