Foster carer jailed for sexual abuse

Natasha Boddy
Roderick Alexander Finch. Picture: 7 News

A foster carer and youth worker has been jailed for 10 years for sexually abusing three boys during his WA career in what a judge described as a significant breach of trust of his victims and the community.

Roderick Alexander Finch, 55, will remain behind bars until at least January 2022 after he was sentenced in the District Court this morning after he admitted 21 crimes against three teenage boys between 1991 and 1993.

Two of the victims had been in Finch's foster care and a 16-year-old who woke to find him molesting him had been under his supervision during a community service work camp in 1993.

Judge Felicity Davis said it was regrettable that police did not pursue a report by the 16-year-old victim at the time.

The court was told police had interviewed Finch, who denied the allegation, before he moved to Queensland.

It was not until allegations from the other victims, both of whom had been in his foster care between 1991 and 1993, surfaced recently that Finch was charged over the crime against the 16-year-old.

Judge Davis said Finch had breached the trust of not only his victims but also the community.

She said Finch had offended for his own sexual gratification, providing his victims with alcohol to overcome their resistance and waiting until they were asleep before molesting them.

She said his offending had involved a "degree of deviant behaviour".

Judge Davis accepted Finch was genuinely remorseful and said he had recognised his offending had destroyed the lives of the three complainants.

One of the boys he cared for, who was deemed as having "special needs", repeatedly protested during the abuse and at one point ran away.

Victim Robert McAuley, who consented to being identified, said he hoped he could move on with his life now that Finch had been sentenced.

"I was hoping for (a sentence of) at least 15 (years)," he said outside court.

Mr McAuley said the sentence had given him a "little" relief.

"It's over, it's finished and now I can move on," he said.

"Now that he's been sentenced, I can try and move on."

Finch's 10-year prison sentence was backdated to January and he will be eligible for release on parole after serving eight years.

He will be a reportable offender when he is released from prison.