Gary Moscrop – convicted – 10 years for child molestation

Gary Moscrop - Child Molestor

Nick French, 42, was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness and served as an elder. As as child he was tormented physically and psychologically by his Jehovah’s Witness step-father.
His abuser Gary Moscrop, 76, was finally jailed for 10 offences including indecent assault, gross indecency with a child, buggery and child cruelty by a court in Sussex, UK. Moscrop was sentenced to 10 years in jail on January 8, 2015.

Nick French has waived his right to anonymity. He has spoken to The Argus newspaper in Brighton and to Jehovah’s Witness Report.

The Argus reports that “Elders of Jehovahs’ Witnesses denied the police access to their records.” Nick told the Argus journalist, Rachel Millard, that “he was astonished about that and the fact that Moscrop appeared to have been reaccepted into the organisation years after being thrown out because of his caution for sexual abuse.”

He said: “I was astonished. There was never any form of repentance or apology or anything like that.

Nick has shared more details with Jehovah’s Witness Report.

This is his story:

You need to move on, everybody else has.”

These were the words of a Jehovah’s Witness elder to my family who were being stalked by my abuser at a JW assembly just after his reinstatement.

My abuser’s name is Gary Moscrop, and he was my step-father after my mum had married him not long after she converted to Jehovah’s Witnesses.

He started abusing me right from the outset. I was only seven years of age and he continued for five years. Then one Thursday night whilst the rest of my family were attending a Witness meeting I was subjected to an episode of abuse that horrified and disturbed me and still does to this day. He was eventually convicted of buggery for what had happened that night. The next morning at the age of 13, I managed to find the words to say I had been sexually abused. He was disfellowshipped on his confession. Up till then I had spoken on a number of occasions of the physical beatings however as it was my word against his, he was believed, I could not form the words to tell of the sexual abuse I was enduring.

For reasons unknown to me it would be another two years before the police were called, and I was only able to tell of the last time I was abused, though not the extent as I was ashamed and embarrassed. Sadly my mum did not want to press charges and so all he got was a caution. That was in 1987.

Gary Moscrop was reinstated as a Jehovah’s Witness at around the year 2000. I was not informed of this, nor had any apology from him so am unsure how he was able to demonstrate his repentance. At the next assembly, he stalked my family and one of them called me in a distressed state, telling me that the elder, who knew the case, had said “You need to move on, everybody else has.”

I wrote to the elders in Brighton congregation explaining that this is not possible to move on, daily we are reminded of what he put us through. To date, I have not heard back from any of the elders in Brighton.

At around 2002 I found out he had married a young Filipino girl who was studying with the witnesses, and she was pregnant. Immediately I contacted the police and gave them copies of the statements that were taken in 1987. They were very good and went to his house and informed him that they were classing him as a sex offender, and he would have limited access to his yet unborn child. Thankfully his new wife kicked him out.

This experience brought back many memories of what I had been through, and now with children of my own I could not comprehend how anyone could hurt or abuse children in such a way. I went into a deep depression and became suicidal. I went to my GP, who referred me to a psychologist, and for six months, I went through a course of CBT.

The CBT helped a great deal. However, I was plagued with flashbacks on a daily basis. I had never spoken to anyone, even my therapists about the abuse I suffered. Eventually, I could no longer cope and suffered a nervous breakdown. I stopped being a Jehovah’s Witness overnight, resigning as an elder and never going back to any meetings.

I wrote a journal of what was going on in my head, in order to try and make sense of what had happened to me. I then spoke to a close friend about what I had survived. All this was in 2011, for the first time in my life I was able to confront my demons, and went back to the police and told them about events nobody had heard about before.

A case was put together and sent to the Crown Prosecution Service, who said we had a strong case for the High Court.

On January 8th, 2015 Gary Moscrop was jailed for ten years for the offences against me and I am very happy to see some justice.

However, many questions still remain.

Why were the police not called straight away?

Why was I not informed of his reinstatement when at the time I was also a JW?

How could he be reinstated without evidence of repentance?

Why were JW families in the area not warned of his crimes?

Did the elders know what kind of person he was before my mum married him? 

More information

Argus News Victim tells of sexual abuse story at hands of step father Link


About Susannah

"Susannah," JWReport's News and Opinion Editor, is very familiar with the Watchtower Society and its leaders past and present. An experienced editor and writer, she was born and raised in the UK where she was an active Jehovah's Witness until she was 28. She now lives and works in southern Europe.


Gary Moscrop – convicted – 10 years for child molestation — 18 Comments

  1. Thanks Susannah another very well written article how brave Nick and all the other victims are I hope many more will be Inspired to come forwards too<3

  2. The sickness of these freaks in the congregation who abuse children mentally, emotionally and physically, is disgusting beyond words. It’s a shame that the Organization doesn’t pursue pedophiles with the same fanaticism that they do for those who masturbate, want to celebrate Christmas, question any of their insane doctrines or who accept a blood transfusion rather than die.

    I’ve long thought that if the Governing Body members themselves were charged with aiding and abetting pedophiles, they’d get “new light” on the subject at warp speed. The fact that they actually believe that they are the ‘one true religion’ on earth would be laughable if it weren’t so tragic.

    • This article is very shocking, and I find the fact that a man abused this innocent child for so long disgusting. However, I must say that as a Jehovah’s witness I do not believe in any way that what this man did is the congregation’s fault. Jehovah’s witnesses do not in any way encourage pedophilia, or rape. Nobody apart from the elders and Gary know why he was reinstated, and I do agree that it was very strange how he did not aplogise to Nick-the only reason I can suggest is that the Gary told the elders he felt repentant, but the elders said it would not be good to approach Nick. If Nick is reading this, I would like to say that I am very sorry for what happened to you, and even to me, I understand why you would leave the congregation – after all that happened you must feel so betrayed. But please do not blame this on our religion- if somebody says he is repentant, we believe him – we can’t read minds. I hope you have found happiness and I am glad that this pedophile is in prison once and for all.

      • Thanks for your comment Julie. Just a couple of questions. If the Pope can apologise to the many children who were molested because he recognised the policies and the protection of children by church leaders was abysmally poor – then why not the Governing Body? Case after case involving JW’s is saying the same. Children were not protected, families were silenced and elders did nothing. Do you know or are you aware of the statistics of repeat offenders? This is not about repentance – this is about lack of support, protection and help for the child. Please ask your elders who the pedophiles are in your congregation. They will not tell you. Ask to see the safeguarding policy and ask how it operates.
        One study by the Mayo clinic in 2007 indicates how the perpetrators operate and when you see this within the congregations and know that the congregations remain silent and the elders refuse to help the police – then there is no defence.

        “Pedophiles often intentionally try to place themselves in a position where they can meet children and have the opportunity to interact with children in an unsupervised way, such as when babysitting, doing volunteer work, doing hobbies, or coaching sports. Pedophiles usually obtain access to children through means of persuasion, friendship, and behavior designed to gain the trust of the child and parent.” Instead of defending an abuser – perhaps it is about time Jehovah’s Witnesses start to question the policies and start to defend and protect the child.

        Please consider these stats and recognise why Jehovah’s Witness congregations are a pedophiles playground:
        • More than 1/2 of all convicted sex offenders are sent back to prison within a year. Within 2 years, 77.9% are back.
        -California Department of Corrections.

        • Recidivism rates range from 18-45%. The more violent the crime the more likelihood of repeating.
        -Studies by the state of Washington.

        • 3 in 10 child victimizers reported that they had committed their crimes against multiple victims: they were more likely than those who victimized adults to have had multiple victims.
        -BJS Survey of State Prison Inmates, 1991.

        • Like rape, child molestation is one of the most underreported crimes: only 1-10% are ever disclosed.
        -FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin.

        • The behavior is highly repetitive, to the point of compulsion, rather than resulting from a lack of judgment.
        -Dr. Ann Burges, Dr. Nicholas Groth, et al. in a study of imprisoned offenders.

        • Hi Susannah, I couldn’t have put it better myself, but I would like to add the following. Elders are meant to act as shepherds and a shepherd looks after his flock, protecting them from harm. Allowing a pedophile into the congregation is like allowing the wolf in sheeps clothing to roam the enclosure. Would it not be loving to have at least approached me to let me know of his supposed repentance and reinstatement? Would it not be loving to alert the families in his congregation to the dangers he posed? Additonally the secrecy that operates within the congregation allows pedophiles to carry on like an alcoholic in an off license/liquor store. They are able to interact, groom all in the guise of being a loving brother. So whilst I am very happy that my abuser is now in jail, I am very unhappy that children in congregations worldwide are exposed to such people.

          • Thank you for replying. As far as I understand, Nick’s family were not “silenced” but decided not to advert authorities when they had just found out. Elders in the congregation respect the decisions that families make. I do not know why the elders did not approach you and tell you of Gary’s reinstatement- but perhaps the reason Gary did not tell you of his repentance was because you had a restriction order? As for other families in the congregation, dont worry, I’m sure they didn’t approach Gary and invite him to have a cup of tea. Gary didn’t have muc participation in the congregation.

            Nick, I’d like to ask you a few questions,but if you don’t feel comfortable answering them I understand
            Do you know how long Gary went to the meetings before being reinstated?
            Are your family no longer Jehovah’s witnesses?
            I understand you were a witness for years-even an elder. How did you suddenly leave-and why?

          • Hi Julie, I appreciate your interest (below), and implore you to search your heart on the bigger picture here. Meantime I am happy to answer your questions:

            Q) Do you know how long Gary went to the meetings before being reinstated?
            A) No as I live hundreds of miles away and my family were no longer in that congregation. Do you know as I would like to know where he was between 1987 and 2000?

            Q) Are your family no longer Jehovah’s witnesses?
            A) They are still witnesses.

            Q) I understand you were a witness for years-even an elder. How did you suddenly leave-and why?
            A) I could no longer cope with the hypocrisy within the organisation, being told that we live is an spiritual paradise when my experience and that of many others I had seen first hand was anything but paradise made me realise there was something very very wrong. Since my exit I have been able to understand the manipulation used to keep the witnesses from finding out the real truth.

            On the point of being silenced I have been told by a member of my family that they were told not to tell others in the congregation as this would be divisive. I can only imagine that my mum did not approach the police initially so as not to bring reproach on Jehovah’s name. There was no restriction order. If there had been he was violating it by going to an assembly hall that my family were attending after his reinstatement and stalking them. That does not take away the fact that if someone is truly sorry they would ensure that message was relayed to me, restriction order or not.

  3. can only school English, last 40 years ago in the school learned 🙂 , therefore this is report with a translation agency written, yes we will make it public it did, go ahead nick… greetings from Germany, from an ex-jw.

  4. Julie,
    There is a culture of silencing the survivor within Jehovah’s Witnesses. The elders say things like well we must forgive, it will bring Jehovah’s name into disrepute. It is in Jehovah’s hands. The survivor is not supported in bringing a “brother” to court. There are numerous examples.

    Here are some examples from the last few weeks of how the practices operate. Jonathan Rose was allowed by elders to cross examine the girls he had abused – this is something not allowed in a court – hence the reason why the Charity Commission is investigating JW practices in the UK.

    This pedophile Campos fled to Mexico and continued to attend meetings even though he was wanted in the USA. One of the GB Losch refused to put in an appearance at the trial even though ordered by the court to do so. Watch the video.

    19 elders covered up this case

    As you know witnesses go door to door and are encouraged by the WBTS to do so and to take children with them. The WT claims they do not encourage that – and are claiming that they have no responsibility in this high profile child molestation case.
    The court could see where the responsibility lay and awarded in this case $7 million for the abuse of Candace Conti and $21 million for the behaviour of the WBTS in punitive damages. Listen in the video to what the lawyer said the jury wanted.

    In the past silence was how they were able to continue – Now, people are talking and they are being listened to not just by the police. The police are publicly stating that there is a lack of co-operation by elders. This is nothing new to the children who were abused in the congregations. They know too well that their parents did nothing because of the culture of silence imposed by elders and the Governing Body.

  5. Nick- Thank you for answering the questions. I don’t have many answers you are looking for. Perhaps you should return to Brighton and find the answers. Considering Gary is now behind bars, you could approach the elders of his congregation and ask them the questions in person. You might view it as a silly idea, but I truly do want you to find closure and maybe this is the next step.

    From what ive seen, you are a lovely person, and I wish you all the best.

    Like in any religion, there are ones who trick everyone and are these disgusting people- the way I see it, that is not the religion’s fault.

    Gary went to Brighton congregation for over 10 years before he was reinstated. The elders believe that anyone can change- and they reinstated him. If Gary said he was repentant, they had to believe him. Although this may sound like rubbish to you- the only one who knows Gary’s heart is Jehovah.

    As a child, my mother left the congregation for five years. I was 15 when we finally returned. Throughout the time I was gone, I was unhappy. When I returned, although I came to realise that people did have faults- and some were bad- I knew that the religion was not to blame.

    I do love this religion, and I know you can be happy without it, but I prefer to have a hope for the future – I have researched into many rules I did not understand, and I came to understand them. Our religion promotes researching into anything we do not understand- not just accepting things.

    I don’t think I am a bad person, and I think God’s laws have shaped me into a better one-they still are.


    • Hi Julie, thank you again for your response, however I am feeling sad for you now. Why not ask the elders if there are any other pedophiles in your congregation, and see if they can answer you. I wrote to them a number of years ago when I was an elder and had no reply, the police asked them recently for help in the case and got no reply, what makes you think that now as an ex Jehovah ‘s witness they will treat me better? I would urge you to re visit your questions on their policies and check them against other organisations, double check the quotes in the publications etc. I am able to move on with my life, happy and even happier knowing Gary is behind bars, he should have been put there years ago, my ongoing suffering would have ended much sooner had this been the case.

      • If I’m honest- I don’t know what to reply. I really don’t want people thinking my religion promotes pedophilia, etc – but perhaps people will realise in their own time. I’m glad you replied to my comments- seeing the perspective of the person who had this happen to them has helped me. Personally, I believe that anyone who has done something so dreadful should go to prison. I have read books published by jw and they did ssad that if you were being sexually abused, you should speak out and tell someone. I’m glad that you did. Maybe im saying goodbye.


  6. Hi Julie, I was surprised at your comment “Our religion promotes researching into anything we do not understand- not just accepting things.” The publications and the presentations in the KH and at conventions do not encourage any research beyond JW materials. People who do independent research are chastised. JW’s can only reference one website and JW materials. With any research, if you only use one source of information you will not uncover the facts, cross reference and independent research is healthy and it is the reason why people are flooding out and leaving – because with independent research the beliefs do not hold up. “Thus “the Faithful and discreet slave” does not endorse any literature, meetings or websites that are not produced or organized under its oversight. … For those that wish to do extra Bible study and research, we recommend that they explore Insight on the Scriptures…” Kingdom Ministry Sep 2007
    JW’s are generally good people and they want to believe that what they are told by one source of information is the truth. That is why when many do the research and find out for themselves that they have not only been misled, but people have unnecessarily suffered – they do not remain silent.

  7. Why does a belief in a entity presuppose that anything on that one website is substantiated? Sound reasons for belief surely means cross reference with information from a range of sources? Why does the organisation not allow JW’s to do that? Why is information hidden? It is good that you are in touch with your feelings and commented here. There is nothing to fear from information and research.

    An independent expert says of JW techniques “The educational target of the Jehovah’s Witnesses is subordination by coercion and uncritical acceptance of religious doctrines and teachings, in order to break the free will of the growing child and to mould it into an uncritical and dependent individual.”
    Hence why many born-in feel a little lost when they start to think for themselves. Moving from a culture of dependency and ready answers (albeit not questioned and unsubstantiated independently) is not easy. With support people are finding thinking for themselves and researching creates a better life.

    • Its funny because with research and using my reason I have only grown more close to my religion. I believe that for some people who are easily misled, it’s different because as soon as they read an article they leave the religion without researching and using their abilities to reason. I don’t think JW’s try to mould people into “uncritical and dependent individuals”. In fact, I have met many JW’s who are intelligent and have thought about what they are following.

  8. No one mentioned intelligence. Intelligent people are often unduly influenced by high control techniques within groups. Independent research goes beyond using one website and only JW literature. It goes without saying that people get closer to a set of beliefs when only one source of information is allowed.

    I wonder why the WT remained silent about membership of the United Nations for example or why they remained silent about the return of the prophets and Beth Sarim the house that was built for the prophets when they should have been resurrected in the early part of the 20th century.

    Some people carry on wanting to believe a set of ever changing ideas – especially when they may lose their family if they question. They also hang onto a set of beliefs when the information is removed so they cannot easily cross reference. Thanks to the internet information is no longer so easily hidden and can be researched and cross referenced.'s_Witnesses_and_the_United_Nations

    The March 2015 Watchtower is beginning to reference the next doctrine that is about to be “changed” concerning 1914. For so long 1914 was when Jesus came into his kingdom. Apparently that may now no longer be the case and Christ will come just before Armageddon? It seems whatever the organisation says, someone will always want to believe it and when fear is added to that, they will avoid independent research.

    You may want to check out the BITE model of how undue influence is maintained over people within high control groups. The BITE Model
    I. Behavior Control
    II. Information Control
    III. Thought Control
    IV. Emotional Control

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