A UK transgender father of two awaiting gender reassignment surgery has been sentenced to three years in men's prison after two girls said they were molested.
Britnee Aitken was convicted of three charges of sexual assault and one count of exposure stemming from a period between July and September 2012 when the convicted sex offender, then identifying as a truck recovery driver named Marcus, invited two young girls over to his home, according to the Daily Mail.
One of the victims, who was then six-years-old, said they were invited over under the guise of playing board games with Aitken. When they knocked at the front door, Aitken reportedly poked genitals through a letter box.
Aitken was charged in 2020, and had no previous convictions, but had accepted a caution in 2012 for having an illicit "upskirt" video of a seven-year-old girl.
Aitken appeared in court donning long read hair and wearing makeup and a low-cut women's shirt. The defendant had been ordered to sign onto the Sex Offender Registry for life, but denied any wrongdoing. Aitken was also handed a Sexual Harm Prevention Order, and is prohibited from loitering around school grounds or children's play areas.
One of the victims said in a statement: "I suffer flashbacks due to the abuse and I get angry when I contemplate and think about what this person did to me. What happened has affected my ability to form and maintain relationships with friends and family and the abuse has caused me to struggle with anxiety and anger management. I am concerned about these things will impact my life going forward."
Defense counsel Adam Roxborough said in mitigation that "These offenses occurred over a short period ten years ago and there is no suggestion of any repeat offending since."
"During that time Miss Aitken has maintained a good work ethic as a recovery truck driver and led a decent life."
"She has fragile mental health and given her sexuality, she has suffered abuse on a regular basis. It is for her a daily issue," he added. "That, she hopes, would come to an end to an extent when she is able to have gender reassignment surgery and her plans for that were moving ahead for this year. Of course any custodial sentence would put that progress back considerably."
"She has to be punished but the question is whether that punishment should effectively cause such damage to her notwithstanding the damage she has caused to others," he continued. "She still does not recognized her guilt but a sentence of imprisonment could be suspended. It must be a difficult life for her to lead at the moment."
Sentencing Judge John Edwards slammed Aitken's actions, saying: "I bear in mind the difficulties you may encounter in a custodial environment but this offending was sustained, predatory and very distressing for these girls. It has had a significant emotional impact on one of them, she being vulnerable and impressionable courtesy of her age."
"You presented as an almost avuncular figure, happy on the surface to indulge those children with games, when your true motives were more sinister," he added. "You crossed a very clear boundary in order to indulge your attractions. Your caution plainly displays an interest in young children."