THE father of a victim of sexual abuse has criticised judges who opted not to increase the perpetrator’s sentence.

Paedophile David Pennery’s seven year jail sentence was referred to the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme by the Attorney General.  Pennery twice abused a young boy and was caught with more than 4,000 indecent images of children.  The case was reviewed but judges opted not to increase the 25-year-old’s sentence.

It means the former Colchester Zoo worker is likely to serve three-and-a-half years in jail and the remainder on licence when he is released in late 2020. 

The father of his victim, who lives in the Tendring area, labelled the sentence “soft” and said Pennery would be back on the streets aged 28, with his whole life in front of him.

The dad added: “To say I’m disappointed is an understatement.

“By Christmas in 2020 he will be back out walking the streets and what will we do then?

“We’ve just got our son back after everything he has been though.”

He added: “I don’t know where to turn now or what avenues are open to me.

“I just don’t understand how seven years is enough for what he has done to my boy and to our family.”

As well as the vile assaults on the boy - who was aged four during the first incident - Pennery was also caught with more than 4,000 indecent images of children as well as about 800 sickening videos on his computers and USB devices.

The 25-year-old, of Raynor Road, Colchester, was handed the seven year sentence in June at Ipswich Crown Court after admitting a total of six charges, including three counts of sexually assaulting a child aged under 13, in Colchester, in March 2014, and three counts of having indecent images on his laptop between April 2013 and December last year.

A spokesman for the Attorney General said: “After careful consideration, the Attorney General referred the case of David Pennery to the Court of Appeal under the Unduly Lenient Sentence scheme.

“The case was heard on September 8.

“The Court of Appeal decided not to increase the sentence.”