Wife gives harrowing testimony at Falmouth child abuse trial

First published in News

The trial of Peter Petrauske and Jack Kemp has also included evidence from Pamela James, Kemp's wife until their divorce following his arrest last December.

She told the jury that she and ‘German Pete’ Petrauske had sexual intercourse a number of times between the early 1970s and 80s.

“My husband knew about it, he wanted me to,” she said. “It was a wife swapping stage we went through.”

Mrs James also told of her husband having slept with another woman in their home for a few weeks, while she slept downstairs.

She knew her husband went to witches' meetings with ‘German Pete’ but she told him she didn't want to go or know about it.

“I did go to German Pete's home and see a lot of weird ornaments and statues, and he did read my fortune on the Tarot cards but it was all rubbish,” she said.

The allegations of child abuse came to light, she said, at a birthday party at which a lot of alcohol was drunk and her husband was accused of rape.

Another witness, who gave evidence behind a screen, told the jury her experiences as a child “destroyed my life”.

She was questioned by Jo Martin, counsel for Kemp, about her not having mentioned him and Petrauske when interviewed by the police about the sexual abuse.

“Yes, because I was ashamed of what they did and what would happen,” she said.

She had been taken to the ‘Hot Rocks’ quarry numerous times on the excuse of taking the dog for a walk and had seen Kemp and Petrauske there.

“It was disgusting and makes me feel repulsive,” the witness declared. “Even now I try to avoid travelling on that road.” During cross examination yesterday the witness agreed that she had received nearly £25,000 compensation from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board but declared: “I gave it all away, to anyone, it was dirty money... I never wanted people to know about what had happened but I had to do what is right.”

The alleged abusers, she declared, were: “Disgusting, dirty people and they will never change.”

Referring to Peter Solheim, she said: “He destroyed me.”

When it was suggested that she was lying the woman retorted: “I have nothing to lie about, why would I put everyone through this? I am trying to do what is right about all this...”

In her videoed interview a third woman to allege she had been abused said she had felt really guilty about not having spoken about it before.

It began when she was a child and until she was about nine numerous people were involved in abusing her. It ended when she was 14.

The woman spoke of being about six or seven years old when she was in a room with four men, one of them with a camera.

“I was abused by people I did not know, there are probably some videos of me out there for people to watch and enjoy. I was not a bad kid but the men in my life were bastards.”

The witness said that Kemp was present a number of times but nothing had happened to her in his house. He always had a few girls there.

After describing the ways she had been abused and hurt she declared: “I knew it was wrong but I was too scared to tell.”

The trial continues.

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