Five victims of a man's sexual abuse faced him across a
Dunedin courtroom yesterday as he admitted responsibility for
offending over a 25-year period.
Dunedin man Basil Raymond Heazlewood (73) had been due to
stand trial in the Dunedin District Court on 31 charges of
indecent assault, rape and intentional injury.
All but three of the charges relate to alleged offending
between 1961 and 1983 against four young girls.
The complainant in the remaining three charges was 28 at the
time of alleged indecencies against her.
Following ongoing discussions between Crown and defence
counsels, Craig Power and John Westgate, Heazlewood changed
his plea to guilty on 17 charges and was remanded in custody
for sentence on June 13.
He was discharged on the remaining 14 charges. Judge Kevin
Phillips had delayed Heazlewood's arraignment until late
morning so all five complainants could be in court to hear
their abuser admit responsibility.
Potential jurors were also present. Judge Phillips said he
thought it was appropriate Heazlewood should plead in front
of the jury panel because, had the case proceeded to trial,
12 of them would have been chosen to hear the case.
Heazlewood pleaded guilty to two representative charges of
indecently assaulting one girl between 1961 and 1964, when
she was aged between 8 and 12.
Another six charges - three representative indecent assaults,
one intentional injury, and one specific rape and
representative charge covering multiple rapes - related to
offending against a second girl, between about 1974 and 1983.
The offences began when the girl was 6 and continued until
she was 16 or 17.
Heazlewood admitted two indecent assaults against a third
girl when she was aged about 4, between November 1973 and
He admitted four charges of indecently assaulting a fourth
girl (two of the charges covering more than one offence) and
two of raping her, between 1978 and 1982, from when she was
The final charge Heazlewood admitted was one of indecently
assaulting a 28-year-old woman at Dunedin between June 1985
and June 1986.
He had touched or groped the woman's breasts while she was
staying at his home following the end of her marriage.
Heazlewood hit one young girl with his belt (injuring with
intent) and called her ''a dirty slut'' because he saw her
with ''hickies'' on her neck when she was a teenager.