A former St John Ambulance cadet leader has been jailed for a string of historical sexual offences against two children.

David Bigg, 72, of Shillitoe Avenue, Potters Bar, appeared before St Albans Crown on Wednesday (July 3), after previously pleading guilty to four counts of indecent assault against a child and two counts of indecency with a child.

The crimes were committed against two victims who were both cadets in the 1960s and 1980s respectively.

The court heard how Bigg carried out a sustained campaign of abuse on his first victim, who was aged between 11 and 14 at the time.

The offences were carried out while the victim was under Bigg’s care, often when he was being escorted home from meetings by the leader, who would perform sexual acts on himself in front of the victim.

Bigg’s second victim was aged between 11 and 15 when he was subjected to unrelenting abuse, including assaults where the offender would persuade the victim to engage in sexual acts with him.

Again, the incidents would happen when Bigg was alone with the victim after meetings. He would then escort the victim to his family home as if nothing had happened.

Bigg’s offending came to light only when the victims reported the abuse to police, in 2015 and 2018 respectively.

He was sentenced to nine years and four months.

Detective Constable Jason Tinsey, from Herts Constabulary’s Historic Child Abuse Investigation Team, said: “I want to first pay tribute to the victims in this case, who have both shown immense courage and dignity throughout the whole investigation. I cannot imagine how difficult it must have been for them to live with what happened to them in the years since the abuse took place.

“I can only hope this sentence brings them a sense of closure and they can now move forward with their lives knowing Bigg has been convicted for these abhorrent crimes.

“We take every report of sexual abuse extremely seriously, however much time has passed, and will always fully support victims throughout the investigative process. We are here to bring offenders to justice.”

If you have been a victim of historic sexual abuse, you can report it to police on the non-emergency number 101, or online at www.herts.police.uk/report