Woodford Green music teacher ‘assaulted his pupils’, court told

A MUSIC tutor with a water fetish filmed himself submerging one of his pupils in a bathtub after restraining her with his tie, a court has heard.

Michael Crombie, 73, molested young girls during private “music lessons” at his home in Monkhams Avenue, Woodford Green, it was said.

Crombie recorded eight videos including a “highlights tape” featuring one of his victims lying naked or semi-clothed in his bath as he urged her to hold her breath, jurors at Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

In a recording played to the court, Crombie can be seen with one hand on the 10-year-old’s chest, holding her under the water.

Crombie allegedly counts up to more than a minute as the girl struggles for air, telling her: “Slow it down if you can” and “grit your teeth”.

He is also said to have trussed up the youngster with his tie while she lay in the pink tub at his house.

Crombie told the girl they were “bubbling” exercises to help her breathing while learning to play the recorder, the court heard.

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Prosecutor Sandy Canavan said:

In one film played to the jury, Crombie is allegedly heard coaching the youngster, telling her: “Come on, stick at it – it’s going to be the best one.”

Later, he can be heard to excitedly say: “I think that’s a minute, that’s definitely over a minute” as the girl releases bubbles from her mouth.

Crombie allegedly performed sex acts on a series of young girls between 1991 and 2002 when parents sent their children to him for private piano, recorder and singing lessons, the court heard.

Prosecutor Sandy Canavan said Crombie later explained his behaviour with the girl in the bath by claiming he was helping her breathing.

Crombie denies 28 counts of indecent assault, seven counts of making indecent images of a child and possessing indecent images of a child.

The trial continues.