Philip Vivian Thompson, 71 years, of no fixed abode was convicted of eight counts of serious sexual assault and taking indecent images of children between 1977 and 1983. The victims were two boys aged between nine and 15 years at the time of the abuse.
DC Stuart Hosking who investigated the abuse for the Met’s Paedophile Unit said: "The abuse that Thompson subjected these boys to has had devastating consequences, not just for his victims, but also for the families of the victims.
"The fact that these crimes were committed over 30 years ago is not a factor – this conviction sends out a clear message that police will take any allegations of abuse seriously, they will be thoroughly investigated and any perpetrators will be brought to justice.
"Thompson is an unrepentant paedophile who preyed on any vulnerable child that came in contact with him. He had a particular preference for young boys, but I have good reason to believe that he also abused young girls. There are undoubtedly other victims of Thompson’s who have not yet come forward.
“I would urge anyone who has been sexually abused by Thompson, or anyone else, to make contact with the police where they will be treated with respect and their allegations will be taken seriously."
Thompson came into contact with his first victim after the child’s mother moved her family into the same street in Brixton, south London in 1974. Thompson befriended the family, earning the trust of the mother, before preying on her son – he was aged nine years when the abuse started in 1977. Thompson would take the youngster to his home and ply him with drink and drugs before abusing him.
The abuse spanned a period of six years, during which time another boy – a school friend of the first victim, aged 13 at the time of the first offence – was also abused.
The abuse went unreported for nearly 20 years until 2002 when the offences were brought to the attention of police by the first victim.
Attempts were made to trace Thompson but it was discovered that he no longer lived in the UK. Eventually, he was traced to Thailand where, in 2003, he was arrested by the Thai authorities. Thompson was bailed while awaiting extradition to the UK, but during this time he fled the country, his destination believed to be Central America.
Efforts to trace Thompson proved futile until, in November 2009, a man tried to enter the UK at HeathrowAirport following a flight from Mexico. That man was Thompson – he was arrested at HeathrowAirport and officers from the Paedophile Unit based informed.
Officers interviewed Thompson and he was charged with multiple offences on 4 November 2009.
He was found guilty on 28 April 2010 following a trial at Inner London Crown Court.