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Australian Media on Paganism

10 years jail for child-sex witch

5th March, 1998 - Herald Sun

A SORCERER'S evil spell was broken yesterday when he was jailed for 10 years for crimes against two young girls and the justice system.

Self-proclaimed witch Robin Angus Fletcher looked dismayed as Justice David Harper told him he had used pagan ritual as an excuse for kinky sex.

Fletcher, 42, had also claimed his Wiccan religion allowed him to use any means, including death, to stop the girls giving evidence against him.

"Religion can never be a cloak for the sexual exploitation of children," the judge said. "It cannot be used as a justification for the perverting of justice."

The sentence brought to an end an extraordinary case of suburban witchcraft, astral travelling, pagan rites, reincarnation and teenage rebellion.

Fletcher virtually enslaved two troubled 15-year-old girls who came to him for counselling and used black magic and mumbo jumbo to entice them into prostitution and sado-masochism.

He fed them drugs and used mind-altering techniques and hypnotism to dupe them into believing kinky sexual acts in which they were tied up and whipped were pagan rites.

He also advertised one of the girls on the Internet as a "submissive teen schoolgirl ... bruisable and will take belt and paddle ... wears dog collar and nipple clamps".

Outside the court, Det-Sgt Wayne Harvey agreed the investigation had been bizarre.

"He practiced a version of witchcraft that he claimed was an authentic form of paganism," he said.

"(But) he used it to cloak the sexual exploitation of children. Most responsible mainstream witches or pagans are appalled by what Mr Fletcher's been up to."

Justice Harper jailed Fletcher for a minimum of eight years. He said his crimes placed the girls at grave risk of lasting psychological damage.

Fletcher's former de facto wife, Faye Helen Stone, 43, received a two-year jail term, suspended for two years. She was part of Fletcher's plot to try to silence the victims after he was arrested on sex charges, including rape.

In sentencing, Justice Harper said Fletcher was a serious sexual offender because of the humiliation and degradation the girls suffered. "You bound your victims by hand and placed a dog collar around their necks," he told him.

"This was done as antecedent to and separate from the indecent acts, namely whipping the naked victim's backside."

The judge said he did not accept the prosecution case that Fletcher wanted the girls murdered after his arrest.

But he tried to arrange for them to be prevented from giving evidence at his committal hearing, even if it meant the death of one or both of them.

Fletcher and Stone, both formerly of Marara Rd, Caulfield South, pleaded guilty to attempting to pervert the course of justice.

Fletcher also admitted three charges of committing an indecent act with a child under the age of 16, a charge of sexual penetration of a child aged between 10 and 16, and a charge of prostituting a child.

The judge said the self-proclaimed witch had a measure of kindness and compassion in his nature.

"Too often the best side of your character has been concealed behind a fog of muddled thoughts associated with your professed status as a witch," he said.

When Fletcher gave evidence at his plea hearing it started with a weird ritual and became weirder.

He refused to swear on the Bible and, after a debate, was allowed to take an oath with his hand on a charred stick he called a borstel.

Fletcher drew on books including the Witches Bible to try to show there was nothing unusual in pagan ritual about stripping, whipping and sexual gratification. It wasn't much different, he said, to rituals such as those used by Masonic orders.

One of his more outlandish claims was that one of the teenagers was the reincarnation of a Celtic priestess and the other girl was her hand-maiden.

In what was perhaps his most revealing moment, Fletcher admitted he had made a terrible mistake, and added: "Maybe I was crazy."

Fletcher is an intelligent man and completed two years of a university course and two years in a Catholic theological college.

Herald Sun, 5/3/98

 

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