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Wednesday, 3 July, 2002, 10:44 GMT 11:44 UK
Ex-pupils win damages for abuse
Former headmaster Robin Peverett
Peverett: Abuse of power
A prep school has paid tens of thousands of pounds in compensation to former pupils who were sexually abused by a former headmaster.

Eight victims will received between 5,000 and 75,000 each in an out-of-court settlement with Dulwich College Preparatory School in Cranbrook, Kent.

Two years ago the former head, Robin Peverett, then aged 66, from Battle, East Sussex, was given an 18-month suspended prison sentence after admitting nine charges of indecent assault.

The offences, involving girls and a boy, were committed between 1965 and 1978.

The victims sued the school, but met the school's governors to discuss the case.

Afterwards they issued a joint statement which said the settlements had been paid by school insurers.

Care

"This compensation is in recognition of the sexual abuse they suffered as children aged 10 to 12 years perpetrated by the then headmaster Robin Peverett."

It added: "The former pupils are satisfied that appropriate measures are in place and ensure the highest possible standards of pastoral care for pupils."

Peverett was awarded an OBE in 1995 for services to education and was a government adviser.

He was head teacher at the private school when the Countess of Wessex was a pupil there.

His trial was told that she had nothing to do with the case, but that the offences had come to light when Peverett was interviewed on television about her marriage to Prince Edward.

The prosecution said the allegations involved "punishments" in which Peverett made the children lie across his knee with their clothes pulled down.


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