Maple Leaf Gardens child abuser Gordon Stuckless faces new and rare buggery charge

Steve Mertl
National Affairs Contributor
Daily Brew
Gordon Stuckless is facing 11 more charges after two more alleged victims came forward to Toronto police.

The last living scumbag who was part of the notorious Maple Leaf Gardens child-sex ring could be spending the rest of his ugly life in court or prison.

Gordon Stuckless, 64, was hit with another batch of sex charges this week, including one rare count of buggery, the National Post reports.

It brings to 40 the number of new charges related to his activities as an equipment manager at the old Gardens decades ago, resulting from more of his victims coming forward.

There is, of course, a presumption of innocence in these new charges, even for someone like Stuckless. But the fact he's a loathsome child predator is undeniable.

Stuckless was convicted in 1997 of indecent and sexual assault involving 24 boys from the late 1960s to 1988. The Toronto Star noted there were at least 572 separate incidents of molestation of young boys he'd befriended.

[ Related: Stuckless arrested on new sex assault charges ]

Stuckless, along with Gardens usher John Paul Roby and equipment manager George Hannah, lured dozens of boys with free tickets to hockey games at the historic arena and promises to meet members of the NHL Toronto Maple Leafs.

He was initially sentenced to two years less a day but a Crown appeal resulted in the sentence being boosted to five years. He was paroled in 2001 after serving two-thirds of his prison term, the Post noted.

Roby was found guilty of 60 counts involving 42 boys and declared a dangerous offender subject to an indefinite prison term. He died in prison in 2001. Hannah, who died in 1984, was never charged but was implicated in Stuckless's activities, QMI Agency reported.

Stuckless's arrest this week was the fourth so far this year and he now faces a total of 40 new sex charges. He has been free on $1,000 bail since his last arrest in March.

[ Related: Manitoba Appeal Court increases sentence for sex offender Graham James ]

His lawyer, Ari Goldkind, told the Star it's "quite possible" the list of charges against Stuckless could grow even longer.

"There could be more, it would not surprise me," he said.

Det. Const. Roger Villaflor of the Toronto Police Sex Crimes unit told the Star that York Regional Police are investigating new complaints against Stuckless but have yet to lay charges.

The charges laid this week relate to Stuckless's time as a teacher and volunteer at a local sports club, Villaflor said.

It's interesting that the Crown would approve a charge of buggery, a crime that disappeared from the Criminal Code of Canada in the late 1980s. It suggests the charge, which is rarely used, relates to an offence that dates from before the Criminal Code section was amended to split the offence into bestiality and anal intercourse that doesn't involve consenting adults or a married couple.

It'll also be interesting to see, if Stuckless is convicted, whether prosecutors petition to him declared a dangerous offender.