She said to McCartney: “They have been blamed for getting you into trouble by the other children and struggled with guilt for getting you into trouble because of their own fondness for you. That’s because you had carefully groomed them.McCartney, of Blaydon, Gateshead, was found guilty of seven counts of sexual assault after a trial, and admitted two counts of possessing indecent images of children at an earlier hearing. An NSPCC spokesperson said: “McCartney’s crimes will have had devastating and long lasting effects on his young victims, particularly since his horrific behaviour would have robbed these girls of the feeling of safety every pupil should have at school.”We hope today’s sentence will go some way to helping McCartney’s victims regain those feelings of safety, but they will also need every support to help them fully recover from their ordeal.” Victims of a paedophile teaching assistant have told a court they were bullied by other children for getting the popular member of staff jailed.Treva McCartney abused three young girls, aged between seven and eight, while working at a school in Tynedale after “carefully” grooming them.Newcastle Crown Court heard he preyed upon two of the victims in one-to-one sessions, taking advantage of having them alone to slap and squeeze their bottoms.The court heard the 55-year-old’s behaviour only came to light when one of the girls told her older sister she “liked him but wished he would stop touching her”.Victim personal statements from the families revealed the girls had been “blamed for getting McCartney into trouble by the other children”, and had struggled with their own feelings of “fondness” towards him.When police searched McCartney’s home after receiving reports of abuse, officers seized his computer and found indecent images of children, including nine of ‘category A’ – the most serious.Judge Amanda Rippon told McCartney that “no-one should feel guilty but you” as she sentenced him to three years and six months in prison.Referring to victim personal impact statements, Judge Rippon said the three girls had been left “confused and distressed”. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.