A convicted sex offender used his dogs ‘as cover’ to visit a children’s play park, a court has heard.

Former school teacher Christopher Rolfe Flavin stood trial at Haverfordwest magistrates court on Monday, March 18, after pleading not guilty to breaching a sexual offences prevention order.

Flavin, 66, told the court he was of no fixed abode, but later stated he lived in a caravan in Hundleton.

Flavin denied entering a Pembroke Dock children’s play area on November 19, which he was prohibited from doing following a 2007 crown court conviction.

Phillip Kidney told the court he spotted Flavin walking a dog in the park at around 11.45am.

“I felt a little uncomfortable, knowing Mr Flavin’s past, I jumped in my van and drove to the police station to report it. I’m aware of his background, which caused some concern.”

Sian Vaughan, prosecuting, told the court one of the requirements of the order prohibited Flavin from entering children’s play areas or loitering within 50 metres.

She added that school children were due to be let out for their lunch break at the time Flavin was in the area, and he had been warned previously about going to local parks.

The court heard that the park was near a junior school and youth club, and had tennis courts, play equipment and a skate-park which were used by children.

Miss Vaughan said Flavin was jailed in 2015 following convictions for indecent assaults on boys under 16.

“There is every cause to be concerned about you and your behaviour.”

“I suggest that you are using the dogs as a cover to give you an excuse to go to a park.”

The bench was told that there were other areas in the locality where Flavin could have taken his dogs.

Police had advised him to ‘steer clear’ of children’s parks, after he was spotted near a Pembroke park in July, and officers had gone over the terms of the order with him.

Flavin, who represented himself, told the court he entered the park to allow his two collie dogs to go to the toilet before going shopping at Tesco, and had been walking slowly because he was waiting for a hip operation.

Flavin, who told the court that he been a school-teacher for 30 years, said he had not gone to the park with the specific aim of seeing children, and had not gone into the designated children’s areas.

“I was in that park purely and simply to walk my dogs. No other reason.”

Magistrates found Flavin guilty, but decided that their sentencing powers were insufficient.

He will next appear at Swansea crown court on April 18, and was released on bail with the condition to surrender his passport to police.