Principal sexual assault trial: Joseph Moncarz sentenced for abusing student

The former principal of an Auckland-based private school has been sentenced to five-and-a-half years’ imprisonment for the sexual abuse of a young student who he called a liar at trial but – in an unusual reversal – later admitted to having victimised.

Joseph Jacob Moncarz, known as “Joey” to students at the Deep Green Bush School in Clevedon, rural South Auckland, returned to Manukau District Court today after spending more than seven months in jail awaiting the sentencing.

The delay was partly due to the 51-year-old’s admission of wrongdoing, which didn’t come until after jurors found him guilty in December of seven charges involving the abuse of a single student under the age of 12. During today’s hearing, he sought a lesser sentence due to the remorse that his lawyer argued was part and parcel with his late admission of guilt.

“That is not something we see often,” David Dickinson said of his client’s reversal, acknowledging that sentence discounts for remorse are usually only associated with guilty pleas but suggesting his client’s “full and frank” disclosure should perhaps serve as an exception to the rule.

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