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“He was a really nice man and I looked forward to seeing him every time I went."


BM-53 - Source: Paul Wilson. The man they called a monster Sexual experiences between men and boys, Chapter 4 Beyond Sex: The Question of Intimacy. Cassell Australia Limited, 1981. URL:

Criminologist Paul Wilson wrote a portrait of an Australian man, Clarence “Clarry” Henry Howard-Osborne, who was generally depicted as a pedophile predator in the media. The book by Wilson contains one case of a testimony that seems suitable for this collection. This concerns a young man of 26 who explained why he became involved with Osborne from the age of 15:

“My father left my mother when I was very young and even though he sent me presents at Christmas and on my birthday I think I only saw him once when I was young. I love my mother but we never talked — it wasn’t her fault because she had enough on her hands as it was. She had three other kids to look after and had to get work. She was always having trouble getting new jobs because the sort of jobs she had were only short-term ones — waitressing, working behind bars and those sorts of things. I often wanted to talk to her about lots of things but I never really got the chance and she really didn’t have the energy to listen anyway.

When I met this man he seemed to be able to talk to me about things that I wanted to talk about. He took an interest in me and in my life that no one ever had before. He was a really nice man and I looked forward to seeing him every time I went. I think I saw him about twelve times over three years and as well as the sex we used to talk about lots of other things as well. When I heard that he had killed himself, and heard all those horrible things the papers said about him I cried, and cried and cried. He was, I guess, the nearest thing I had to a father, and sometimes I thought a mother, and here he was being described in the paper as though he was some sort of crazy man raping young boys. It wasn’t like that at all, I went to see him and he didn’t have to drag me there."

Though Wilson allegedly was accused of child abuse himself, there does not seem to be any reason to doubt this particular account.

  • I owe this case to Cyril Galaburda.
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