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HomeCrimeScience teacher jailed for sexual relationship with a 16-year-old

Science teacher jailed for sexual relationship with a 16-year-old

A former Southwark science teacher has been sentenced to three years in prison for being in a sexual relationship with a sixteen-year-old who he helped to achieve better grades in physics.

Robert Hanna, 43, was jailed today for six counts of sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust.

Detective Constable Erica Slater, from Central South Command, said: “This was a complex case where Hanna denied everything from the beginning and lied continuously throughout the case. However, the victim courageously remained steadfast in her evidence and following a thorough investigation his accounts were disproved.

“Today’s sentence highlights the severity of this case and I would encourage anyone who is a victim of or victim to sexual abuse in any context to contact police. We have specially trained officers to investigate as well as ensuring there is ongoing support provided to the victims.”

Hanna had previously been found guilty after a twelve-day trial which culminated on Tuesday, October 19. In addition to the prison sentence, he has been issued with a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, which will prevent him from having any unsupervised contact with anyone under eighteen. He will be on the Sex Offenders Register for life.

The court heard how Hanna was a teacher in Southwark from 2015 until May 2019, when he was dismissed. While he was a teacher, he began having a sexual relationship with the sixteen-year-old pupil.

During a school prom he asked a group of pupils to meet up with him, before purchasing alcohol and meeting with a few of the girls. A sexual relationship began with the victim, over a four-month period. The court heard that victim told Hanna that she wanted the relationship to end but he persuaded her to meet with him one more time, before breaking up with her.

On Monday, April 1 2019 the victim told a teacher what had been happening and the school immediately suspended him. Police were alerted and an investigation began, led by specialist officers from Central South Child Abuse Investigation Team.

Officers interviewed him the following day and he denied the relationship. A subsequent investigation found hotel check in and check out confirmation, banks statements and phone download evidence that corroborated the account given by the victim.

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