A judge has condemned a serial paedophile’s offending as horrific and utterly depraved as he sentenced him to preventive detention for at least 20 years.
Justice Edwin Wylie said a finite prison sentence would not be sufficient to protect society from Aaron Ellmers, and “I have no confidence that you are motivated to try to rehabilitate yourself”.
He said Ellmers, 41, had failed to address his offending, lacked remorse and there was a very real risk that he would continue to sexually assault young boys.
The Hastings truck driver sat motionless, his head bowed throughout his sentencing in the High Court at Napier yesterday.
Crown lawyer Steve Manning said Ellmers’ offending was “so serious and so disturbing” that preventive detention – an indefinite sentence that can be imposed on offenders convicted of serious sexual or violent offences – was required to protect the public.
Mr Manning read from a psychiatric report which said Ellmers’ “benign presentation conceals a callous nature where his focus is on solely satisfying his own deviant sexual needs with no consideration for the rights of his victims”.
His skill at obtaining trust and grooming victims probably “provides him with a measure of pride and satisfaction”.
Ellmers befriended parents with the intention of obtaining their trust and grooming their sons for sex. His victims were aged 3 and 9 when he began abusing them.
He crushed sleeping pills on their desserts to stupefy them. He used a camera to record his offending and emailed it to others. Many charges relate to objectionable material involving children as young as 6 months.
Ellmers is the type of offender preventive detention was invented for. The minimum non-release period will see him inside until he is at least 61, but I would not be surprised if he is not released until he is extremely old and feeble as he seems unable or at least unwilling to change.