Paedophile Gwynedd lifeguard jailed for 50 years ‘got what he deserved’
Detectives reveal who they helped put Gareth Vincent Hall, 24, from Talysarn behind bars in tough US jail for raping a 10-year-old girl
Get Daily updates directly to your inbox
A paedophile former lifeguard from Gwynedd “got what he deserved” when he was handed a 50-year jail term in a tough US jail for raping a 10-year-old girl, says one of the detectives who helped put him behind bars.
Gareth Vincent Hall, 24, from Talysarn near Caernarfon won’t be released until 2066 after he admitted four counts of rape and other sexual offences against the girl at a court in Oregon last year.
Hall, who worked at a leisure centre in Caernarfon, first groomed the girl online, then flew to the USA in April 2015, hired a car and took the girl to various hotels and motels where he raped her.
Her family only learned of the rape after he returned to the UK.
He was arrested in May 2015 after he again travelled to the USA.
He was already under investigation by North Wales Police after being arrested in October 2014 on suspicion of committing offences online.
In a special programme, Y Ditectif (The Detective) to be shown on S4C this evening retired cop Jeff Donaca from the Eugene Police Department in Oregon has spoken out about their case against Hall.
Detective Donaca said: “Gareth Hall is a perfect example of someone trawling the internet looking for somebody to groom, and picked on a vulnerable person. This girl was looking for love, what she thought was true love and he preyed upon that.
“He said things like ‘I love you’ and ‘I want to be with you’. They talked about moving away to Australia. It was, on his part, deception from beginning to end for one purpose.”
Another detective, Jed McGuire, explains how the then 22-year-old former Caernarfon lifeguard started his communication via a chat application.
“They met when he contacted her on a chat site. He pretended to be two girls. He went so far as to make a video of these girls and play that video for this victim,” he said.
The S4C programme, produced by ITV Wales, retraces Gareth Hall’s movements in the US – from Seattle to Eugene in Oregon where he met his victim. He took the girl to various motels in Eugene over four days before the girl’s family called the Eugene Police reporting she had been raped.
“The things that happened were horrific. For her there was fantasy of what she wanted life to be like,” Det Donaca said.
Eugene Police arrested Gareth Hall in Chicago in May 2015 after police discovered he was flying back to the US for another visit. Police have not been able to confirm his intended destination, but fear he may have targeted others.
“I believe the possibility of Gareth Hall having other victims is very real. His return to the US lacked a lot of explanation and inconsistent with his stated purpose that he wanted to view middle America ” McGuire added.
An FBI led appeal did not lead to any other charges.
After his arrest Hall maintained he thought the Eugene girl was 16 or 17-years-old. But the victim’s statement to the police in Eugene presents a different account.
“She disclosed she initially told him she was 14-years-old but later told him she was 10,” Det Donaca said.
Y Ditectif presenter Mali Harries visits the Eastern Oregon Correctional Facility where Hall is serving his sentence.
Hall declined to be interviewed on camera for the programme and sent a letter to the programme makers explaining that “he wasn’t ready to share his side of the story”.
“There was an argument that a sentence of 50 years is more than murder. In some cases that is true, but in this case, given what he did to a 10-year-old, repeatedly and the laws that we have here, he got what he deserved.
“Those type of predators don’t belong back on our streets, in America, in Wales, anywhere.” Det Donaca said.
Y Ditectif is on S4C on Tuesday, May 16 at 9.30pm. English and Welsh subtitles available.