A MAN who claimed to have amnesia when police questioned him about child sex offences has been jailed for 10 years.

Clive Stuart Collins, aged 76 and of Bournemouth, abused two girls during the 1970s and 80s.

He was sentenced at Bournemouth Crown Court on Thursday after being found guilty of 11 counts of indecent assault and two charges of gross indecency.

He was also told he would be placed on the Sex Offenders Register indefinitely and made the subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order indefinitely.

The verdicts followed a nine-day trial at the same court last month.

Collins was accused of sexually abusing a girl from the age of six over a number of years.

The victim said she was abused on a regular basis by Collins during the 1970s and early 1980s. She suspected she had been drugged by Collins when some of the offences had taken place.

Collins was also accused of sexually assaulting a second victim, who was a teenager when the offence took place in the mid-1980s.

She also suspected that she may have been drugged by something Collins had put in a drink.

When he was interviewed by police, Collins claimed to have complete amnesia for the entire period of the offences due to a recent heart attack.

Detective Constable Leo Glendon, of Dorset Police’s Serious Sexual Offences team, praised the victims’ courage in coming forward to report Collins’ offences.

He said: “Collins’ despicable offending has had a profound impact on his victims, which is something they have had to carry with them for many years.

“I would like to pay tribute to the two victims who showed immense courage in coming forward to report the offences and attending court to give evidence.

“I hope the sentence imposed by the court will bring them some closure and help them to move forward in their lives, knowing Clive Collins is behind bars.

“I also hope that the outcome of this case will give other victims of sexual abuse the confidence to report offences, no matter when they were committed.”