BREAKING NEWS: Former teacher jailed for child sex abuse
A FORMER schoolteacher has been jailed for using his role as a rugby coach to exploit a teenage boy and subject him to a catalogue of sexual abuse.
Keith Ruby was found guilty of 16 sexual offences against the youngster by a jury in December, and today (Fri) a judge has sentenced him to 10 years in jail.
The court had heard that the 36-year-old had met the teenager, who was a promising young rugby player, when he was teaching at the prestigious Sidcot School near Winscombe in 2004.
Ruby developed a relationship with the youngster, who cannot be named for legal reasons, when the pupil was 12.
The trigger for the abuse was the victim’s realisation that he was gay, which he shared in confidence with Ruby, who started asking him questions about his sexuality and then began physically molesting him.
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The abuse started when the victim was 14 and lasted for about a year. It took place during massage sessions at the victim’s home, in the changing rooms at both Weston and Winscombe rugby clubs and on an overseas rugby trip.
The court was told Ruby, of Biddisham Lane in Biddisham, had worked himself into a position of trust with the victim’s family, who had believed he was giving their son one-on-one sessions to further his development as a rugby player.
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Although a police investigation was launched in February 2006 after allegations about the abuse came to light, the final offence occurred after the investigation was launched.
The initial investigation collapsed in July 2006, but a fresh probe was launched in 2011 when the victim told his parents about the catalogue of abuse.
Ruby denied all 20 allegations relating to the victim, but on December 6 the jury at Taunton found him guilty by majority verdict of 11 counts of engaging in sexual activity with a child and five counts of penetrative sexual activity with a child.
They found him not guilty of two counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity and two counts of sexual assault on a child under 13.
The Mercury had been prevented on reporting on the trial and its outcome by a court order, which was lifted this morning.
Ruby was also handed a sexual offences prevention order, forced to sign the sex offences register for life and has been placed on a barring list to prevent him from working with children again in the future.
* Pick up a copy of next week’s Mercury to read the full story.
* ALTHOUGH some of Ruby’s offending took place at Weston Rugby Club, the club itself was never part of any police investigation.
The Sunnyside Road club has moved to distance itself from Ruby’s crimes in a statement released to the Mercury this week.
Chairman Jack Russell said: “The committee of Weston Rugby Club wishes to emphasise that Keith Ruby has never been associated with the club in any capacity at either senior or junior level, and that any misdemeanours that took place at their premises were due to his involvement with other organisations that were using the facilities.
“It is also relevant to note that nobody from Weston Rugby Club was ever approached or questioned by the police in connection with these events.”