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Police investigations into claims of historic sexual abuse have resulted in prison sentences for three men. 

The three former Salvation Army members were found guilty of a total of 23 offences relating to the abuse of two young female members.

The charges included indecent assault, indecency with a child and attempted rape. The offending took place in a number of locations around Blackpool including at the Blackpool Salvation Army Citadel.

William Tomkinson first abused one of the girls in the 1970s when she was 11-years-old whilst giving her a lift home. He was treasurer for the Salvation Army at the time. Philip Worthington began to abuse the same girl when she was 13-years-old and Derek Smith abused her when she was 14.

When the victim told Trevor Worthington about the abuse, including that his son had been one of the perpetrators, Worthington himself began abusing her.

During a police investigation into the first victim’s allegations, a second victim came forward to report that Tomkinson and Philip Worthington had sexually abused her in the 1980s, from when she was 15-years-old.

Tomkinson was jailed for four years. Trevor Worthington was jailed for 12 months and Phillip Worthington received a jail sentence of eight years and three months.

“These men abused their positions of high standing in the community to take advantage of two young and trusting girls,” commented Sophie Rozdolskyj from the Crown Prosecution Service. “Three of the men consistently denied the allegations throughout the investigation and prosecution. However the CPS presented a strong case to the jury which included compelling evidence from the two women who were abused by these men.”

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