Jack Kemp, accused in coven sex trial denies any abuse
A man accused of being part of a witches' coven that sexually abused young girls more than 30 years ago has denied he was involved.
Father-of-nine Jack Kemp, 69, is charged along with his friend Peter Petrauske, 72, known as "German Pete" of a series of sex attacks on young girls.
The jury at Truro Crown Court has already heard prosecutors argue the abuse involved people in hooded robes, daggers and chanting at various large houses across west Cornwall.
After Petrauske was arrested, police seized long flowing robes with pendants, books on witchcraft, spells, a black leather whip, a gold and china dagger, black and red eye-masks and a black-handled sword from his house.
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Petrauske, of The Beacon, and Kemp, of Grenville Road, both in Falmouth, deny all allegations.
Yesterday the court heard Kemp, a former tin miner, had convictions for sexually abusing young girls in a number of separate cases dating back to 1964.
When Jo Martin, defending, asked if the current allegations were true, he answered: "No – never in this world."
He told the court Petrauske was involved in paganism and that he wasn't, instead choosing to be a member of the Spiritualist Church at Falmouth.
Earlier in the trial one of the three alleged victims told the court when she was a child she was sexually abused by paedophile Stanley Pirie.
In 2005, Pirie, 78, from Falmouth, was jailed for 12 years for abuse spanning more than 20 years. He died in 2007.
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said while the abuse by Pirie took place, Kemp photographed what was going on with a Polaroid camera and filmed it with a reel-to-reel cine camera.
Yesterday Kemp said: "I know nothing about it. I never had a camera like that or a projector."
His former wife Pamela James had earlier told the court she had slept with Petrauske after Kemp encouraged her in wife-swapping.
Kemp said he knew the pair had slept together adding: "Pamela became a glamour model in a magazine which Peter ran with a bloke named Jimmy. He used to write and edit it and suggested we did wife-swapping – it was all adults together."
Under cross-examination from Jason Beal, prosecuting, Kemp said he believed the alleged victims had come forward hoping to receive money from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board if he and his co-accused were found guilty. He said: "They're after the money. It's all lies."
Mr Beal said Kemp used the paraphernalia used in paganism and witchcraft to scare the children he had abused.
The barrister said: "You put those robes on to frighten some little children. It was nothing to do with paganism or witchcraft – it was child abuse."
Kemp replied: "I never wore robes. It's (paganism) not my religion."
Mr Beal questioned the defendant about his previous history of sexually abusing young girls.
The court had already heard that when Kemp was first convicted of sexually abusing a young girl in the 1960s, he was sent to Starcross mental hospital, in Devon.
Kemp said yesterday he was treated with tablets, medication and lectures from doctors.
He added: "I wasn't very well then. I just wanted help. I just did it – yes I did it. It was a sickness."
He finished giving evidence late yesterday afternoon.
Petrauske was due to begin giving evidence this morning.