Queensland man Rick Thorburn raped a girl under 12 and tried to rape an even younger girl while they were in his care, police will allege.
The 57-year-old can be publicly linked to the details of the allegations for the first time, almost two years after he was charged.
The former truckie’s wife, Julene, was running a family day care centre out of their Chambers Flat home, south of Brisbane, when he allegedly molested the girls, who can not be named for legal reasons.
In June last year, Mr Thorburn was committed to stand trial on one count of rape, one count of attempted rape and seven charges of indecent treatment of a child under 12, relating to both girls.
Defence lawyer Adam Guest confirmed on Monday that his client would contest the charges.
According to Supreme Court documents filed when Mr Thorburn applied for and was granted bail in May 2016, both children were attending the family day care when it is alleged they were repeatedly molested between July 1, 2015, and April 28, 2016.
Police objected to bail being granted, arguing Mr Thorburn was in a position of authority and had “clearly taken advantage” of his unsupervised access to “vulnerable” children.
The younger girl first disclosed the alleged abuse to police on April 28, 2016, before the older girl was interviewed and made similar allegations, according to an objection to bail affidavit filed by a Logan Child Abuse Investigation Unit officer.
The older girl accused Mr Thorburn of digitally penetrating her vagina and “permitting” her to touch his penis, as well as showing her a pornographic video on the way to school one morning in the black family van, with a Miss Julene’s Family Day Care sticker on the back.
A police prosecutor had successfully kept the father-of-two behind bars when he appeared in the Beenleigh Magistrates Court for the first time a week earlier.
In an affidavit tendered in the proceedings, investigating officer Amarjeet Kumar had argued Thorburn could flee to his native New Zealand, interfere with witnesses, or otherwise obstruct the course of justice.
But the defendant’s wife of 26 years (at the time) said she had shut the daycare business, her husband did not have a passport and she would support him if he was freed to live at home.
Justice John Bond granted Mr Thorburn bail on May 10, 2016, after the Crown agreed any risks of reoffending, failing to appear or interfering with witnesses could be ameliorated with certain conditions.
The matter was scheduled for a pre-trial hearing on April 20.