A PAEDOPHILE convicted of sexually molesting a young girl more than a decade ago has been jailed for four and a half years. 

A judge told James Arthur Franklin, who has a previous similar conviction, "The simple fact is you are a paedophile attracted to pre-pubescent females.

"You are in denial and less likely to be amenable to treatment," said Judge Robert Warnock.

"I regard you as a real danger to pre-pubescent females and you have shown no remorse or insight."

He added that Franklin, who showed no emotion, seemed to believe the "truly pathetic reasoning" he had given at trial to back up his denials.

Judge Warnock said that 12 years ago Franklin began by grooming the girl by exploiting her interest in horses and his sexual abuse of the child, when she was eight or nine, escalated in seriousness.

"Although I hope it is not the case it does appear that her psychological harm is permanent," he added.

Frankin, of Peak Avenue, Atherton, was convicted in April by a jury of one offence of indecency with a child and seven of indecent assault representing a course of conduct spanning about 18 months.

Liverpool Crown Court heard today, Wednesday, that the abuse stopped in about November 2003 when police were informed that Franklin had sexually abused another young girl and in July the next year he was jailed for nine months.

After that abuse came to light the girl was asked if he had also abused her but as she was confused and embarrassed she made no allegations against him, said Nick Kennedy, prosecuting.

Over the ensuing years she struggled to deal with what had happened to her and it would be brought back to mind when she saw him at equestrian events with his wife.

"That and other factors including the need for some release led to her decision in February last year to tell the police about what had gone on. More mature and confident she was able to speak about it," said Mr Kennedy.

The 51-year-old IT worker was interviewed by police in April last year and denied the allegations, maintaining his innocence at trial.

The judge today imposed a Sexual Offences Prevention Order and ordered Franklin to sign the Sex Offenders Register for life.

David Morton, defending, said Franklin had co-operated with the pre-sentence report and was using his time in prison constructively and hoping to be a "listener" for other prisoners.