A Swindon ‘meals on wheels’ delivery driver has been jailed for repeatedly sexually abusing a 93-year-old woman with dementia in her own home.
59-year-old Frank Greco, of Leighton Avenue, pleaded guilty to seven sexual offences – including attempted rape, assault by penetration and five counts of sexual assault.
While working for Enterprise Works Community Meals in Gipsy Lane, the defendant targeted the frail victim between late-March and mid-April this year.
Unbeknown to Greco, the woman’s son had installed CCTV cameras in her kitchen and living room over concerns about her safety due to deteriorating health.
When he logged in to check the footage, he saw his mother being sexually abused by a man and alerted the police. An investigation was launched and Greco was arrested.
Swindon Crown Court today (Friday) heard how the defendant, on one occasion, had brought moisturising cream with him – applying it to his victim before attempting to rape her. After failing to carry out the rape, he proceeded to digitally penetrate her.
In another incident, Greco removed the woman’s trousers and underwear before performing sexual acts. On other occasions, he touched her breasts under her clothing or kissed her on the lips.
Footage also showed him leading the victim upstairs, out of view of the cameras. On his return to the kitchen, he was seen to wash his penis over the sink and dry it with tea towel.
Two of the offences were carried out whilst a member of the woman’s family were present at her address, but in another room.
He told initially pleaded innocence to detectives, but when he was told about the CCTV footage, he claimed sexual activity had been consensual – despite the victim being assessed a six out of seven on the Global Deterioration Scale for dementia.
Her family said that she can no longer tell the time, confuses her son with her father, struggles to recognise family members, and has confusion and forgetfulness.
Judge Jason Taylor KC said the woman’s son is “still traumatised by what he saw”, adding that it was “hardly surprising”.
Adding: “He could not have imagined what it would record… and I cannot imagine the revulsion [his family] must have felt when they discovered what had been recorded.
“Regrettably, my duty as sentencing judge means I’ve had to watch it as well. It is deeply disturbing.”
Judge Taylor handed down a prison sentence of 14 years and four months. Greco was also classified as a dangerous offender and given an extended licence period of five years and eight months.
Continuing, he said: “Your behaviour that was calculating and controlling. In stark contrast, hers was childlike and compliant…. giggling like a teenager, simply responding to you and doing what she was told. Because – according to Dr Warner – she would have been unable to understand what was happening or make informed decisions.
“[She], like any dementia sufferer, was highly vulnerable to the influences of others. Sadly, your influence was malign and self-serving.
“I am sure you deliberately targeted her because she would not – indeed, could not – resist. And having tested the waters on the first and second occasions, you returned repeatedly. In my judgment, you actions were predatory and depraved.”
Greco has a previous conviction for arson with intent to endanger life dating back to 2001.
Senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Rachel Hardy said: “These crimes represent the ultimate betrayal of trust, Frank Greco chose to repeatedly target a vulnerable woman in her own home.
“The impact of the offending on the victim and her family has been enormous. It was extremely difficult for her family to learn of the abuse perpetrated by Greco whilst he visited their mother.
“This has been a distressing case for the investigating team to work on. We would like to take this opportunity to thank the family of the victim who have conducted themselves with dignity throughout such a harrowing ordeal.
“Our thoughts are with the victim and her family.”
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