Transgender woman jailed for sexually abusing children in Sussex decades ago when she was a man

It follows the sexual abuse of seven children in Sussex between 26 and 33 years ago. Credit: Sussex Police

A transgender woman has been jailed for sexually abusing children in Sussex decades ago when she was a man.

Sally Ann Dixon, 58, of Swanmore Avenue, Havant, Hampshire, was sentenced to 20 years in prison after being convicted of 30 indecent assaults against her victims.

At the time, Dixon was John Stephen Dixon, who transitioned to a female in 2004.

Seven children in Sussex were abused between 26 and 33 years ago. The five girls and two boys, who were aged between six and 15 in the seven-year period from 1989 to 1996, were targeted at locations in Crawley, Bexhill and Icklesham.

Dixon was also found not guilty of four indecent assaults.

Detective Constable Amy Pooley of the Sussex Police Complex Abuse Unit said: "Dixon came to know these vulnerable young children successively through family connections, and used that trusted access to systematically abuse each of them for sexual gratification, in some cases for several months at a time.

"Only when one of the victims eventually came to us in 2019 was the terrible and distressing nature of Dixon's offending over many years finally uncovered.

"As one victim escaped this predatory interest, another would take their place, but sometimes some victims would be offended against simultaneously.

"This case shows again that we will always follow up such reports, no matter how long ago the events are said to have happened, to support victims and to see if we can achieve justice for them wherever the evidence justifies that."

Dixon was given an 18-year custodial sentence with two extra years to be served on extended licence.

At least two thirds of this sentence must be served in custody, a judge ruled.

Dixon will also be subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order indefinitely.