Sir Ron Brierley likely to face prison sentence, forensic psychologist says

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A forensic psychologist who has worked with some of Australia’s worst sex offenders says Sir Ron Brierley is likely to be sentenced to prison.

Sir Ron Brierley.

Sir Ron Brierley will next appear in court on 30 April. Photo: Getty Images

The 83-year-old businessman yesterday pleaded guilty in a Sydney court to three charges of possessing child sex abuse material.

Forensic Scientist Ian Coyle said Sir Ron’s crime was at the serious end of the scale.

“The mere fact that it’s non-contact offending does not detract from the gravity of the offending,” Coyle said.

“Those who are purchasers of child pornography actively assist in the pornographic offending of those who take the images.

“There’s no getting around that – it’s not a victimless crime.”

Moves are now underway to strip Sir Ron Brierley of his knighthood.

A spokesperson for Jacinda Ardern said the prime minister had asked for the forfeiture process to be initiated.

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Brierley will have 30 days to respond, but after that the prime minister can write to the Queen asking her to cancel his appointment to the Order of the British Empire and he would be asked to return his insignia.

Coyle said people who viewed child pornography were twice as likely as sex offenders to reoffend.

Cricket Wellington is reviewing Sir Ron’s lifetime membership, saying it had not received donations from him since October 2017.

A former associate of Sir Ron said he was devastated and angry about the tycoon’s connection to child sex abuse images.

The former colleague, who spoke to RNZ on the condition of anonymity, had worked at the now defunct Brierley Investments, which also employed Dame Patsy Reddy, Sir Paul Collins and John Beattie.

He felt deep sympathy for the “poor kids” involved in the sex abuse images.

Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy declined to comment.

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