A former children’s home owner has been found guilty of 26 charges of historical sex abuse against youngsters in north Wales.
John Allen, 73, from Ipswich, Suffolk, previously denied 40 counts of sexual abuse against 19 boys and one girl between the late 1960s and the early 1990s.
He was found guilty of 21 counts of indecent assault, one charge of indecency with a child and four serious sex assaults.
The jury at Mold Crown Court found him not guilty of two counts of indecent assault and is still deliberating 12 further counts.
Allen listened to proceedings via an audio loop as he sat in the dock.
He was in charge of 11 homes in Wrexham known as the Bryn Alyn Community.
Opening the case, prosecutor Eleanor Laws QC said Allen created “a sexualised atmosphere alongside a culture of fear”.
She told the court Allen employed staff to look after the children, but he got involved in some of the work, including at night, and was “a regular and formidable presence”.
According to Miss Laws, boys at the homes described Allen as being abusive and at times violent, and said he would often be under the influence of drink.
Most of the victims felt they had little choice but to put up with what was going on as they became “hardened to the abuse”, she added.
During the trial, Allen said he had no sexual interest in young boys and thought those who were complaining were looking for compensation in the wake of publicity surrounding his previous convictions.
The jury was told Allen was convicted in 1996 of indecently assaulting six boys aged between 12 and 16 at his care homes in the 1970s.
Allen says that was a miscarriage of justice.
The case has been adjourned until Thursday, when the jury will resume its deliberations.