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Gordon Stuckless testifies at trial that he was sexually abused at age 11

TORONTO - The man at the centre of the Maple Leaf Gardens scandal says he was sexually abused when he was a boy and those experiences affected how he treated his victims.

Gordon Stuckless, who was convicted in 1997 of abusing boys when he was a Maple Leaf Gardens usher, pleaded guilty in April to 100 new charges related to the sexual abuse of 18 underage boys. All incidents occurred decades ago.

But Stuckless pleaded not guilty to another eight charges involving three of those victims.

He is now is on trial in Toronto on those charges, which include buggery, assault and gross indecency.

During emotional testimony Wednesday, Stuckless said he pleaded not guilty to the buggery charges because he "didn't do it' and that his modus operandi was "befriending and manipulating" boys.

Stuckless said his father's friend raped him anally when he was 11 and he would never commit buggery because of what he went through.

"I didn't want to hurt anybody," he said. "I was just out to get pleasure for myself."

Stuckless said he would test the boys and if he didn't get a negative response he would continue on from touching leading to oral sex.

A negative response would be phrases like "I don't like that," court heard.

Court also heard that a 60-year-old equipment manager at Maple Leaf Gardens was the second man to abuse Stuckless. He was 13 and selling ice cream at the Gardens, he said.

“He offered me a puck and he touched me.”

From that point, Stuckless testified that he enjoyed it.


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