The man found guilty of indecently assaulting girls in a Queenstown swimming pool had earlier spent more than a decade in prison for abducting a 15-year-old girl at knifepoint and raping her it can now be revealed.
The Otago Daily Times can now report the defendant, who previously had interim name suppression, is Benjamin Barrie Bradbury, 43, of Tauranga.
Bradbury had been out of prison just over a year at the time of the offending in 2017 in Queenstown, having spent 13 years in prison for abducting a 15-year-old at knife point and raping her in Auckland in 2003 and indecently assaulting other minors around the same time.
At that time he had been out of prison eight months, having served an 18-month sentence for indecently assaulting a 6-year-old.
Today, in a unanimous jury verdict at Invercargill District Court, Bradbury was found guilty of 10 of 13 charges against him related to offending which took place in the lazy river at Alpine Aqualand, at the Queenstown Events Centre.
The offending took place on June 10 and 14, 2017 and related to six victims under the age of 12.
The jury found him not guilty of three charges relating to one of the six victims, which related to offending alleged to have occurred on June 8, 2017.
The maximum penalty for each charge is 10 years' imprisonment.
In a video of a police interview with her, one of the girls, aged 10 at the time, said she wanted to tell the man to go away but did not want to be rude.
She alleged the man was "crouching'', so the water was close to his chin, and went around the lazy river about 10 times.
Before the jury retired to consider their verdict, crown prosecutor Riki Donnelly told them if lightning struck ''three, four, five or six times, you can't be sure that it's an accident''.
Counsel Hugo Young contended the prosecution case was ''tissue thin''.
''They're weak individually, and they're weak collectively.
''Six tissue-thin cases does not add up to anything.''
Donnelly said the key questions for the jury, if they believed the girls were touched as described, were the intent and indecent elements.
''If you consider there was intentional touching in the areas [between the knees and ribs] of children, who this person did not know ... it won't take you long, the Crown says, to conclude that it was indecent.''
While identification was an issue for the defence, Donnelly contended it was ''implausible'' there was another man in the pool on all three dates the defendant had allegedly touched the children, going ''round and round and round the lazy river''.
''It wasn't a coincidence.''
The man coincided his visits to the lazy river with the busiest time of day for children to be present and touched the children when they were not in the company of a caregiver or adult, he said.
Whether or not a child thought the touching was accidental ''is actually not the primary issue for you''.
''If they think it was an accident [it] doesn't mean it was.
''He was in there [the lazy river] for a long time because he wanted to do exactly what he was doing.
''What are the chances of lightning striking six times?
''When you stand back and look at the whole picture ... you can be sure the charges are proven beyond reasonable doubt.
''Each and every one of them.''
Young, however, said the jury could believe the defendant when he told police any touching he did was accidental and that he was not acting in an indecent way.
''There was no sexual motive behind what he was doing in the pool.''
He said there was a ''real question mark'' over who ''the man'' was on each occasion the children alleged they were touched and many descriptions of him were ''quite wrong'' when compared to the defendant.
The children were all playing in the lazy river - running with and against the current, standing still and playing games, Young said.
''Accidental contact was bound to occur and did in fact ... on a number of occasions.''
He said where the children alleged they were touched would occur when they came in to contact with the man's swimming stroke.
He suspected some complainants had identified the wrong person; one conceded the touch was accidental; and in some cases children had been influenced by what others said, or what they had heard.
''The defence maintains that the number of complainants has been [influenced] by the talk and the news reports.
''You can't be sure the defendant did all of those things.
''Whatever he did was clearly accidental.
''He was just swimming.
''I say that you will find him not guilty on all of the charges,'' Young said.