Former Coast man jailed in UK on multiple sex charges

A FORMER Peregian Springs man accused of emigrating to Australia to escape his crimes has been jailed for 18 years for 20 "sinister" sex offences.

Jeffrey Lake, 78, was found guilty in a UK court earlier this month of a series of charges including rape, buggery, indecency with a child, indecent assault and child cruelty.

The retired police officer was arrested at his Sunshine Coast home in January and extradited to the UK.

The Preston Crown Court heard the charges related to a girl and a boy, whose ages ranged from four to 19 at the time of the offences, which were committed in the 1960s and early 1970s.

Lake was a police officer in Accrington, Lancashire and Liverpool at the time.

He emigrated to Australia in 2002 and was accused by one of his victims of fleeing the country to escape prosecution - a claim he denied.

He said he moved to seek a better quality of life and because he had family connections in Australia.

Last week he was sentenced to 18 years in jail for the rape of a female complainant who had written letters to him detailing the devastation he had wrought.

She said after being abused as a child, she had suffered depression, anxiety and had considered suicide.

Lake was given concurrent 18 year terms for two other counts of rape and lesser terms on other offences.