Published: 09:10, 30 June 2017
A convicted paedophile who went on to sexually abuse a very young child has been jailed for 13 years after a judge found he was a continuing danger.
Under the extended sentence, Nicholas Brand will have to serve two thirds before the parole board will consider his release. He will be on licence for a further six years.
The 54-year-old former bus driver, of High Street, Chatham, groomed the victim and repeatedly assaulted her.
He denied two offences of assault by penetration but was convicted by a jury at Maidstone Crown Court in May.
Brand was in 1996 jailed for 18 months for the abuse of two children, aged seven and nine, while lodging in a pub.
Judge Julian Smith described the latest offending as “grotesque”.
He added: “You are a danger to young children. You cannot be trusted to be left alone with any young child.
“The child was extremely vulnerable.There is grooming behaviour. Opportunistic it may have been, but it was organised and persistent.”
Brand, a father of two, did not give evidence at his trial and did not ask his lawyer to question the victim.
James Ross, defending, said: “It may be the court will accept there was less premeditated grooming or targeting, but that he was presented with an opportunity - a pretty vile act.
“He realises full well he will go to prison for a good number of years. One of his regrets is he will have less ability to influence one of his sons in a positive way.”
Mr Ross said Brand had been in a relationship for about seven years with a woman who was disabled and had a variety of medical problems.
“He acted as a carer for her,” he said. “He is concerned about her wellbeing. He is concerned about how she will survive.
“He understands he must never be in the position again where he is unsupervised. Never again can he be in the company of young people for innocent pleasure" - James Ross, defending
He is concerned she will lose the roof over her head.”
Mr Ross added: “He understands he must never be in the position again where he is unsupervised. Never again can he be in the company of young people for innocent pleasure.”
Judge Smith said the girl “spoke compellingly” at the trial about her experience. “Harm is inevitable with a child so young,” he added.
A sexual harm prevention order was imposed banning Brand from any contact with children.
His name will appear on the sex offenders’ register for life and he will be barred from working with children and vulnerable adults.
An NSPCC spokesperson added: “Brand is a serial sexual predator who continues to pose a clear threat to young children.
“While he is behind bars the community is safe from his offending, but it’s absolutely vital that Brand receives rehabilitation and treatment to minimise any further danger he poses when he is eventually released.
“His young victim has shown great bravery by giving evidence and helping bring her attacker to justice. We hope she is receiving all available support to overcome her experiences.”
Anyone who is concerned about a child can contact the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000.