MasterChef finalist sentenced to 24 years in prison for sexually abusing children
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Warning: this article discusses themes that some readers may find distressing.
A former Masterchef Australia finalist has been sentenced to a minimum of 24 years in prison for sexually abusing children.
It came after a downward spiral following his 2009 Masterchef appearance, which resulted in him filing for bankruptcy in 2016.
Now, the former swimming coach has been sentenced to 24 years before he is eligible for parole, after being found guilty of 43 offences over the abuse of children between 1996 and 2009.
The 43 charges include several counts of sexual intercourse with a child under his care, on top of charges of aggravated indecent assault of a person under 16 and grooming children for sexual activity.
Frost looked on via video link from Shortland prison as judge Sarah Huggett issued his lengthy sentencing on Thursday.
She said that Frost created a culture that facilitated his offending as he openly talked about sex when he was teaching, and encouraged sexual activity with and between students.
"He moved from one victim to the next as and when he so desired and in doing so corrupted their healthy and normal sexual development," Huggett said as she delivered her verdict.
"It can only be hoped that the finalisation of the proceedings can offer some form of closure to each of the victims of these offences."
Some of Frost's victims stood against him in court, with one saying he opted to be involved with the sexual activity talk with Frost as he wanted to be one of the 'cool kids'.
"Paul had built a culture of these types of things being normal," the victim said in a statement provided to the court.
"I know they seem a bit horrifying and strange now."
In court, Huggett found that Frost had taken no steps to rehabilitate himself following his arrest.
"The offender has not acknowledged his wrongdoing at any point during the trial process and continues to maintain his innocence," she said.
The earliest Frost can be released is 3 June, 2047, though he could spend a maximum of 32 years behind bars.
He has also been diagnosed with paedophilic disorder, major depressive disorder and generalised anxiety disorder.