London teacher facing jail after having sex with girls aged 13 and 14

Ben Breakwell, 40, was found guilty yesterday after a trial (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

A music teacher who previously worked at a London school has been convicted of 32 sexual offences against young girls.

Ben Breakwell, 40, was found guilty yesterday after a trial at Isleworth Crown Court.

The court heard how he abused his position as a music teacher to engage in sexual activity with three girls aged between 13 and 16, and obtain indecent images of a fourth.

Breakwell, currently of Monkgate in York, worked at a school in west London from 2014 until the end of 2017.

He began a full sexual relationship with two of his victims when they were aged just 13 and 14.

A pattern emerged which showed Breakwell carefully groomed the girls involved to start taking advantage of them.

Another victim received flattery and supportive messages from him until one lesson Breakwell kissed her.

The girl was upset and told her friends, and later her mum who confronted the teacher. Breakwell denied he had deliberately kissed her.

A general view of Isleworth Crown Court in Isleworth, Middlesex.

The court heard how he abused his position as a music teacher to engage in sexual activity with three girls aged between 13 and 16 (Picture: PA)

The girl was worried she had no evidence to support her claim, and she later told police she felt guilty she had encouraged him as she bought him a box of sweets as a thank you present.

As a result no formal complaint was made.

But in September 2017, the friends of one of the victims approached a member of school staff and told him of their suspicion about an inappropriate relationship involving Breakwell.

The school immediately suspended him, the police were called and an investigation was launched.

Breakwell was arrested in November 2017 and charged in February 2020 after an extensive investigation.

A search of his computer uncovered indecent images of another victim from abroad, who was later traced by police officers.

Breakwell was charged in February 2020 with the crimes (Picture: PA)

Breakwell denied any sexual relationship had taken place between him and the girls.

Detective constable Ben Lawrence-Smith, from the Metropolitan Police, said: ‘My thoughts are with the young girls who were betrayed by Breakwell. They have all been incredibly brave and it is their courage in speaking out that has brought him to justice.

‘Breakwell deceived and abused these girls and then sought to evade any responsibility for his actions. They were manipulated to the point where some felt it was they who were doing wrong. The fact Breakwell was a teacher only compounds this gross betrayal of trust.

‘It is clear that Breakwell was a sexual predator who carefully manipulated these young girls in order to exploit them. His victims were very young and he led them to believe they were in love with him, knowing that if they cared for him they were less likely to alert anyone to his crimes.

‘It can be difficult for victims of sexual offences, especially when their abusers are people in positions of power and trust, to speak out.

‘I would ask that if you suspect anyone to be at risk from similar manipulation and abuse, please tell someone, either a parent, a carer or someone in authority.

‘Due to the predatory nature of Breakwell’s crimes, it is possible there are further victims who have yet to come forward. If you or someone you know has been affected by Breakwell’s offending, or you have been a victim of a sexual offence, please come forward to police. Specially trained officers will be there to listen and support all allegations and work to bring offenders to justice.’

Breakwell was remanded in custody and will be sentenced at the same court on a later date.

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