September 2023

Paedophile compared his vile abuse to Hugh Hefner’s Playboy mansion

A child rapist who compared his vile abuse to Hugh Hefner’s Playboy mansion has been locked up.

Simon Hildrew left a young girl traumatised by raping and sexually abusing her and emotionally blackmailed her into not telling anyone.

When his offending came to light, he was asked by police if he thought it was okay to have sex with a child and he replied: “Is it right for Hugh Hefner to have a Playboy mansion full of teenagers”.

As the 39-year-old paedophile was locked up for 14 years, with an extended licence period of a further six years

At Newcastle Crown Court, the girl’s mum outlined the devastating impact he has had on her and her daughter.

She said she’s noticed her daughter has gone from being happy and bubbly to being “ashamed, angry and withdrawn. I believe she will require long-term therapy”.

She added: “He took her innocence. She’s so traumatised she can’t even speak about it. This will affect every relationship she will go on to have and will affect her future as a whole.

“My world has been shattered. My mental health has been massively affected.”

Vince Ward, prosecuting, said of the victim: “She remembers being confused, wondering why he was making her do these things and being scared in case she got told off.” He added: “He told her a few times that if she told anyone what he was doing to her he would kill himself.”

Hildrew, 39, formerly of Washington but latterly of no fixed address pleaded guilty to:

  • Two counts of rape of a child,

  • Attempted rape of a child,

  • Causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity,

  • Sexual assault of a child,

  • Attempted sexual assault by penetration,

  • Two counts of assault by penetration,

  • Five counts of sexual activity with a child – one of which was on a second victim

  • Three counts of taking 58 indecent images of a child – most of which were of the most serious type, category A.

Jailing him and imposing indefinite sexual harm prevention and sex offender registration orders, Judge Tim Gittins said: “No sentence can go close to undoing the harm you have selfishly done with your depraved acts.

It’s a credit to the victims that they have come forward to ensure you are not in a position to abuse them or anyone like them for a substantial period of time and hopefully never again. I hope they can see themselves in due course as survivors of your abuse rather than victims of it.”

The judge added: “You remain a danger to young females. You have described yourself as a paedophile. You are – and will remain for a substantial period of time without substantial work with professional – a significant risk of causing serious harm to young females.”

When told by Judge Gittins he formed the view he had limited remorse, Hildrew replied: “What do you want me to do, get on my hands and knees and beg and cry? Is this how remorse is displayed? I’m an emotionally damaged person, I find it hard to portray emotion.”