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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 December 2006, 12:13 GMT
Systems 'failed with paedophile'
Kevin Hazelwood
Kevin Hazelwood was jailed indefinitely in April
An inquiry has found the rape of a young girl by a registered sex offender "could have been prevented".

A review into the case of Kevin Hazelwood, 40, from Brighton, East Sussex, concluded systems intended to supervise him had failed.

Hazelwood was being monitored by police, probation and child services officials after a child internet porn conviction in 2002.

But in the same year he began abusing the girl, then aged just five.

He admitted repeatedly raping her over a three-year period.

Hazelwood was jailed indefinitely in April this year and told he would have to serve at least five years and seven months in prison.

The report highlights that there can be no guarantee of absolute safety from devious, manipulative people who are hell-bent on getting round child protection systems
David Hawker, chair of the Safeguarding Children Board

A review group was set up to report back to the Brighton and Hove Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB).

The inquiry was carried out by children's services representatives from East Sussex County Council and Brighton and Hove City Council.

Members of Sussex Police, Sussex Probation Area, the NSPCC and the local health service were also involved.

Hazelwood's own baby son was kept safe from harm, but "a gap" in procedures meant "connections were not made to the threat posed to children in the community, other than the perpetrator's own child", the inquiry concluded.

"It is obvious that none of the agencies significantly extended their information gathering, assessment and investigations beyond the immediate family," the report stated.

That led to Hazelwood being able to befriend his victim's mother and win her trust.

Improve procedures

David Hawker, chair of the LSCB, said he accepted the report's findings, but added steps had already been taken towards making better links between sex offender supervision and "the protection of children within the wider community".

He said "professionals involved in the case acted in accordance with the relevant procedures", but some aspects of those procedures needed improving.

Mr Hawker added: "The report highlights that there can be no guarantee of absolute safety from devious, manipulative people who are hell-bent on getting round child protection systems."

Hazelwood admitted six rapes, two attempted rapes, three sexual assaults and two indecent assaults against the same girl.

The man at the centre of the case

Child rapist prison term to stand
22 May 06 |  Southern Counties
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22 Apr 06 |  Southern Counties
Paedophile jailed for raping girl
20 Apr 06 |  Southern Counties

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