15th Nov, 2018

'Nightmare over' for 'inspirational' teacher wrongly charged with child abuse, says judge

A judge has criticised the Crown Prosecution Service for its decision to prosecute an ‘inspirational and dedicated teacher’ after his nightmare of facing child abuse charges finally ended.

Judge Sylvia de Bertodano said at Warwick Crown Court that she was ‘quite sure no jury in the land’ would have convicted music teacher Vjekoslav Dvorak.

And she told him: “You came to this court as a man of good character, and you leave it as a man of good character. The nightmare is over.”

Dvorak (63) of Kenpas Highway, Coventry, had denied three charges of sexually assaulting a schoolgirl when she was aged between 12 and 15 – and the jury unanimously found him not guilty.

It had been alleged that he had rubbed the girl’s feet on one occasion, had put his head to her chest and touched her bottom on another, and finally that he had pressed himself against her back and run his hands down her front.

Prosecutor Elizabeth Bussey-Jones said: “The allegations concern matters when she was 12-15. She says various things happened to her in the course of those music lessons.

“She says there were various instances, such as kissing her on the top of her head and hugging her. She described feeling confused.”

Dvorak taught in both Coventry and Leamington, but had been unable to work following his arrest in May last year over the allegations, said to have taken place at a Coventry school.

He explained that as a music teacher it was sometimes necessary to touch pupils to guide them, but he emphatically denied any wrong-doing.

And after the jury had returned its not guilty verdicts, Judge de Bertodano commented: “Those who are in charge of decisions to prosecute should take very, very great care indeed before doing so in a case such as this.

“I am quite sure that no jury in the land would have convicted Mr Dvorak in this case.

“As a result of this prosecution he has not been able to work and has had a question mark hanging over him.

“He is clearly an inspirational and dedicated teacher. I am firmly of the view he is no danger to anyone, quite the contrary.

“This case should never have come to trial. There is nothing in it at all.

“It is also damaging for the child involved in this case. She is clearly a very troubled young lady. There are no winners in a case like this.”

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