A FORMER senior Hunter Department of Youth and Community Services manager who appeared to be a "kindly affable elderly man" has been sentenced to 22 years jail for serious child sex offences against six vulnerable teenagers.
Frank Valentine, 78, used his position of authority to sexually abuse teenagers at government youth facilities over a three year period in the 1970s.
His victims were inmates at state detention facilities who were unable to remove themselves from the institution or Valentine, who held one of the most senior positions at each institution where the offending occurred, Sydney District Court Judge Nicole Norman said before sentencing Valentine on Friday.
Valentine was found guilty of sexually abusing a girl, 15, who was pregnant, and who vomited after one of the incidents.
He was found guilty of sexually abusing another teenage girl in a part of a state institution called the dungeon, where he held the teen for three days and repeatedly sexually abused her.
Valentine called some of his victims "whores" and his crimes were "not a momentary lapse", Judge Norman said.
While his wife Maris, his children and friends spoke of a kind and loving man, his victims described a cruel and violent predator.
"His Christian spirit and interest in inspiring the young was absent during the period of offending," Judge Norman said.
"It is not at all surprising that the offender presented a different self to his family and friends. The overwhelming impact of this character evidence is that the offender was capable of being decent and pleasant.
"He acted almost exclusively consistent with this presentation during his evidence. He conveyed a presentation of a kindly affable elderly man."
But "on occasion this veneer cracked", Judge Norman said.
She sentenced him to a minimum 13 years jail and told the court it was likely he would die in jail.
Valentine was appointed the department's Hunter operations manager, or second in charge, in the mid 1980s.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse heard evidence from the Department of Family and Community Services showing alarm bells were ringing about Valentine from at least as early as 1973.
The then Public Service Board in 1973 "had serious concerns about whether Mr Valentine should continue to hold a senior position in the department", documents showed.
The board's concerns about Valentine weren't enough to stop him from being transferred to another government residential facility in 1973, and later to Kurri Kurri's Yawarra Training School for troubled teenage boys, where he allegedly sexually abused a 15-year-old in 1978.