Convicted paedophile and children's television entertainer Ric Marshall dies in South Australia

A former Adelaide children's television presenter who sexually abused young boys has died while on home detention.

Ric Marshall died earlier this month, aged 91, while serving a 25-year sentence for the repeated sexual abuse of four boys.

Marshall was best known in South Australia as a children's television compere during the 1970s, hosting the "Super Duper Flying Fun Show" on commercial TV.

He was sentenced to home detention in December 2012 after being found mentally unfit to stand trial.

At the time, Supreme Court judge Kevin Nicholson described Marshall as an "evil man through and through" for his repeated sexual abuse.

One of the boys abused by Marshall in the 1970s, David Jobling, said it was a big relief to know that he had died.

"I'm relieved that he has passed. Though I wish he'd seen justice in a more traditional way, like a prison sentence," he said.

"However, he served seven years of his 25-year detention and I think he deserved it.

"I see myself as a survivor of something that was a terrible experience."

Justice Nicholson said Marshall's noteworthy roles in the children's television industry and his work running a theatre group during that era gave him access to his victims.

"Through this means, Mr Marshall had access to a steady stream of young, vulnerable victims. He quickly won over their confidence and that of their parents," he said.

"It was a practice of his to encourage them to stay overnight and on weekends, often under the pretence of making it easier for their parents to pick them up.

"He attracted other profoundly perverted men to what must have been regarded by them as a honeypot.

"The relentless depravity and sheer disgusting ugliness of his behaviour and the extent to which he was prepared to take advantage of vulnerable young boys for his own gratification and to destroy them emotionally and psychologically knew no bounds."

Marshall the 'mastermind' behind group of paedophiles

Justice Nicholson said other men in the circle included convicted paedophile Phillip Cave, who is now serving a lengthy jail sentence, Marshall's adopted son Peter Marshall and another man who died before charges could be brought against him.

"Mr Marshall's circle of adult men spent their many leisurely hours obsessed with having sex with young boys," he said.

"They repeatedly engaged in sexual acts of almost every description."

He said Marshall had been the mastermind of the group and described him as "a truly bad person".

"Often in a criminal court a judge comes across people who have done very bad things," Justice Nicholson said.

"There are all sorts of reasons why people might behave badly and those reasons must be taken into account.

"However, it is not as often as the public might think that a judge comes across a truly bad person who is evil through and through, who seems to have no redeeming qualities.

"Mr Marshall is in my view an evil man through and through.

"I have rarely come across his like before."


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