Former teacher convicted of molesting five-year-old in Cambodia told to join UK sex offenders register

A Gorleston , former teacher who was found guilty of molesting a five-year-old girl whilst working in Cambodia has been told to register on the sex offenders register, but insists he is innocent.

On 22nd March this year Mark Smith of Cotoneaster Court  was convicted of an indecent sexual act against a minor at Phnom Penh Municipal Court.  At the hearing at Great Yarmouth Magistrates’ Court he said he would: “Prove his innocence and overturn the conviction.”

The Gorleston resident was the vice Principal at Golden Bridge International School.

Prosecutor,  Mr Owens said: “I understand Mr Smith is seeking to have this case overturned, but as Cambodian laws are similar to UK laws on this offence, he is required to join the sex offenders register here. He will be on it for 10 years, but can be removed if the conviction is overturned.” Smith, a father of two, was previously fined five million Cambodian Riels ($1,250), and was handed a two year suspended jail sentence.

Mr Smith has now returned to Norfolk.


Great Yarmouth amusement arcade Manager stole more than £36,000 to fund gambling addiction

David Reid, aged 34, of Nuffield Close Gorleston stole money from his employers ,  Vauxhall Holiday Park whilst employed as the manager of their playnation arcade to fund his gambling habit and repay a loan shark, the court heard.

Prosecutor Peter Gair, said the thefts were discovered in May, this year, after a member of staff asked for coins and Reid confessed there was no cash as he had messed up and borrowed money from the safe. He had kept a record of the money he had taken over a five month period which amounted to £36,904 and said that he was hoping to repay the cash with a gambling win.

Reid, of Nuffield Close, Gorleston, admitted theft of £36,904 between January and May this year, and has since sought help for his gambling addiction, including voluntarily barring himself from using online gambling sites.

The court heard how Mr Reid got himself in a mess when he borrowed money from a loan shark who had made threats towards him and he had a misguided hope of paying back the cash when he received a gambling win.

He is now was out-of-work and relying on benefits is in no position to pay anything back. Judge Stephen Holt imposed an eight month sentence suspended for 18 months and ordered him to do 150 hours unpaid work.

He said that Reid had been in a position of trust at the arcade but accepted he had not stole the cash to fund a lavish lifestyle but to try to deal with a gambling habit he  had.

GCSE Results Released Today

The wait will soon be over for thousands of students around Norfolk and Waveney, as they discover the results of years of schooling.

Today marks GCSE results day, when thousands of teenagers around the country will open the all-important results envelopes.

It comes amid the biggest shake-up in exams for years, with traditional letter grades being phased out in favour of a numerical scale.

While English and maths switched to the nine to one scale last year, a host of other subjects will switch this summer.

The change came amid tougher courses, which moved the focus away from coursework and onto exams, which many have warned made them much tougher.

Herring festival to boost lifeboat funds

This Sunday sees the return of The Longshore Herring Festival at Hemsby in celebration of thearea’s important fishing traditions and heritage.

The event, to be held at the Hemsby Lifeboat Station, includes live music, a parade and barbecued herring donated by Paul Lines and cooked by the lifeboat crew members, to eat on the beach.

Dan Hurd, coxswain at the lifeboat station, said: “Paul has been a good friend to the service and we really appreciate his support. Also thank you to all the people that have supported us over the years we could not keep this service going without you.”

The day  which runs from 10am to 4pm, also includes some fun activities from the East Anglian Working Newfoundland dogs, an auction, tombolas, a raffle, games, model trucks for the children to play on, music, refreshments, cake stalls and a bar.


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