Step-grandfather allowed to appeal 'touching' conviction

A SUNSHINE COAST step-grandfather has been granted special leave from Australia's highest court to appeal his conviction for touching up his granddaughter.

The man, who cannot be named to protect the victim's identity, was found guilty of unlawfully and indecently dealing with his six year step-granddaughter in 2008.

The jury could not agree on a verdict for a third charge.

The man was sentenced to 12 months jail to be suspended after six months.

Earlier this year the Queensland Court of Appeal dismissed the man's bid to appeal his conviction.

He had argued the verdicts were unsatisfactory because the sentencing judge did not direct the jury they had to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt the offences occurred between or about September 2008 and December 2008.

The man also argued the victim gave evidence in the trial that two foster children under his care were not in the house when the alleged offences occurred when, in fact, his wife's diary stated they were.

According to the Court of Appeal judgment, the girl did not tell her mother about the man tickling her under her underpants on two occasions until 2011.

When the victim was preparing to pre-record her evidence for the trial in 2012, she told police about a third incident for the first time.

But the third incident was the offence the jury could not agree on.

The man applied to the High Court on Thursday for special leave to appeal his conviction.

The High Court granted his application and will hear his appeal on a date to be fixed.


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