A pair of predators who sexually abused young girls in various locations across Queensland, including at nudist beaches and in motels, have claimed their convictions are “manifestly excessive”.
John Patrick Meehan and Jessica Cinnamon Anderson-Grigson both failed in their bids to overturn their convictions for abusing two young female victims.
A jury in 2021 found Meehan guilty of 12 counts of indecent treatment of a child under 16, five counts of carnal knowledge of a child under 16, one count of maintaining a sexual relationship with a child and one count of sodomy.
At the time of the offending in 2012 and 2013, Meehan and Anderson-Grigson were in a relationship.
They were convicted over a series of incidents at nudist beaches, motels and in his car across the Noosa area.
Meehan’s offending related to two female victims, aged between 14 and 15 years in 2012 and 2013 and he was sentenced to two years in jail.
The court was told that Anderson-Grigson would pick up and drive the two teenage girls to the Sunshine Coast, where the offences occurred.
Anderson-Grigson was found guilty of five counts of indecent treatment of a child and was sentenced to 18 months in prison.
Meehan was previously jailed in 2019 for other offences including counts of maintaining a sexual relationship with a child and rape relating to three young victims.
He was sentenced to 16 years and eight months in prison for those offences and he was told he would not be eligible for parole until July 2032.
Anderson-Grigson was already serving an 11-year, three-month prison term for encouraging a young child to be raped and sodomised.
They both launched appeals against their convictions, arguing they were unsupported by the evidence while Meehan also appealed against the severity of his sentence.
They attempted to argue at trial that they had a reasonable belief that both girls were 16 or older at the time.
Justices David Boddice, Peter Flanagan and Thomas Bradley on Friday found that the jury’s verdicts were reasonable and that there was evidence that the pair had knowledge that their victims were younger.
The Court of Appeal also rejected the argument that the judge’s summary to the jury failed to properly represent the defence case.
As well, Meehan failed to argue that his two-year sentence was “manifestly excessive” as both of their appeals were dismissed on all grounds.