A 44-year-old Belleville man has been sentenced to serve five years in a federal penitentiary after being convicted of sex crimes against two young girls.
In February 2017, Michael Tregunna pleaded guilty to one count each of sexual assault, sexual interference and production of child pornography.
On Wednesday, Justice Elaine Deluzio imposed the five-year sentence that was a joint submission by assistant Crown Attorney Michael Lunski and defence lawyer Jason Easton. Given credit for time already served Tregunna will spend four years in custody.
Calling his crimes serious and grievous, Deluzio said she felt the sentence balanced the mitigating and aggravating factors in the case. While Tregunna pleaded guilty saving the victims from having to testify, she said he violated the girls’ trust. Court heard how Tregunna sexually assaulted and took pictures of the girls on multiple occasions over a period of time. A publication ban was put in place protecting the identities of the victims.
“They were your prey,” Deluzio said to Tregunna while handing down her sentence aimed as a deterrent and denunciation of crimes against children. “You not only sexually abused the girls but you violated them emotionally and physically by taking photos of them. You exposed them to an evil they can barely understand and will have to come to grips with as they move through adolescence with the help of their mother.”
Three victim impact statements were filed with the court along with a pre-sentence report that included a sexual-behaviour assessment by Dr. Eccles. The assessment concluded Tregunna posed a moderate to high risk of re-offending but a low to moderate risk of re-offending sexually.
“There is no easy way to say I have sinned and I am guilty,” said Tregunna when he addressed the court. “I have shattered the lives and trust of my victims. There is nothing I can say to defend myself or excuse my behaviour. I wish I could go back and change the past. I’m not the only one who has to live with the hurt and shame of my actions. I want to extend my deepest and most sincerest apology to those those who have suffered because of what I have done.”
Deluzio also ordered a lifetime DNA order and a 10-year weapons ban. Tregunna is not to contact or go within 200 metres of his victims. He is not to attend public places or work where children under the age of 16 frequent. All of the electronic devices including cell phones, a laptop computer, a hard drive and thumb drive seized in the case were ordered destroyed.