Convicted sex offender feeling picked on

A natural-health practitioner convicted of sexual exploitation earlier this year has accused the mother of his victim of attacking him in the press.

“I just don’t know what else I can do. I’ve been through everything and done everything I can. I don’t think this is fair,” Nigel Burn said yesterday.

The practitioner was responding to comments made by the mother of his 16-year-old victim to a local newspaper, warning readers Burn is still practicing in Abbotsford.

“For the sake of my family, this isn’t right. This is just opening a wound over and over,” he said.

In October, Burn received a nine-month conditional sentence prohibiting him from treating any female under 18 unless her parent or another adult, which can include his wife, is present. He was also required to register with the provincial sex-offender registry.

According to a story in the Abbotsford Times, the victim and her mother have moved to a different community to avoid contact with Burn and his family.

Burn was 38 when he began a relationship with the 16-year-old girl.

According to court documents obtained by The Province, the victim and her mother were patients in Burn’s natural-health practice when they became friends with him and his family and began spending a great deal of time together.

Burn, it seems, fell in love with the victim and communicated this to her. She was flattered, and the pair began a clandestine sexual relationship lasting about eight months before she told her mother.

During his trial, Burn did not challenge the victim’s assertion that they had sex, but only litigated the issue of whether the relationship betrayed his position of trust.

In his reasons for judgment, Judge Peder Gulbransen found Burn was in a position of trust and emphasized that although the age of sexual consent is 14, an adult in such a position is required by law to “refrain from sexual activity with the young person.”

Gulbransen concluded Burn presented a low risk to re-offend.

“Burn presents no threat to adults,” he wrote in his judgement. “He does present some threat to teenage girls towards whom he might be in a position of trust.

“Most of his patients are adults. While he may in the future have teenage girls as patients, it is very unlikely that his wife or family will not be aware of that fact.

“The likelihood of him deceiving them again . . . is remote.”

The judge also chastised Burn’s supporters, who suggested that somehow the victim was at fault.

“I think it is unseemly and thoughtless to blame a 16-year-old girl for what happened with a 38-year-old man with all the attributes of a mature, experienced adult,” he wrote.

When contacted by The Province yesterday, Burn said his family has “been through enough.” He said he hoped to let the matter rest.

Burn runs a natural-health and pain-treatment centre out of his home in Abbotsford.

Published in: on December 2, 2007 at 4:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

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