Ex-Sebastopol mayor Graham Collins facing jail for child sex offences

Graham Collins

Graham Collins

A former Sebastopol mayor found guilty of child sex offences is expected to be sentenced on August 8.

In June, a Ballarat jury found Graham Collins guilty of three counts of indecent acts with a child under 16 and one count of sexual penetration of a child under 16.

The jury acquitted Collins on four counts of indecent acts of a child under 16.

Collins, mayor of the former Borough of Sebastopol, committed the offences between 2015 and 2016. He is now aged 76.

Collins appeared in the Victorian County Court in Melbourne on Friday for a further sentence hearing.

The hearing was linked to a video at the County Court in Ballarat, where the Crown prosecutor was located.

Defence barrister Jacob Kantor told the court his client suffered from numerous medical conditions.

He tendered a full medical report to the court, as well as a nomination form for a Fire Services Medal. Mr Kantor said Collins was receiving treatment for hypertension and high cholesterol.

“He still has a hearing aid. He has difficulty using his hands which will have an impact on what he is able to do in custody,” Mr Kantor said.

At a previous plea hearing, Mr Kantor said Collins was a person of good character, having been mayor three times.

He said he had received a Fire Services Medal and was nominated for distinguished services to the community.

Judge James Montgomery approved a police application to take a forensic sample from Collins. Crown prosecutor Patrick Bourke told the court Collins would be a registered sex offender for life.

Judge Montgomery remanded Collins in custody until August 8. The hearing will be held in Melbourne, but Collins will appear via a video link at the County Court in Ballarat.