4 Oct 2004

Second week of Pitcairn sex abuse trials begins

7:46 am on 4 October 2004

The second week of the Pitcairn sex abuse trials gets underway this morning, with more evidence expected to be presented against the most prominent of the defenders, the now Pitcairn mayor, Steve Christian.

An alleged victim in trial three is also expected to give evidence against the oldest accused man, 78-year-old Len Brown.

Seven Pitcairn Island men are facing a total of 55 sex offence charges, including rape and the indecent assault of a five-year-old.

From Pitcairn, Sue Ingram.

"Steve Christian faces six charges of rape and four of indecent assault relating to four women. The court has already heard evidence from one of his alleged victims and today will hear from a second. More evidence will also be heard against Steve Christian's father-in-law, Len Brown. He's accused of raping a woman twice. The prosecution is trying to build a picture that the defendants preyed on young woman on the island, sexually assaulting them with impunity. The defence has accused the complainants of lying, suggesting the offences did not take place. By the end of this week, six out of the seven trials are expected to have opened. The seventh, that of Steve Christian's thirty year old son, Randy, is due to open next week."