A Far North teacher who pleaded guilty to 49 charges of sexually abusing schoolboys this week is no Beast of Blenheim, his lawyer says.
Counsel Alex Witten-Hannah said a comparison was being made in some quarters between his client, former Pamapuria School deputy principal James Parker, and serial sexual offender Stewart Murray Wilson.
That comparison was inaccurate and unfair, he said.
The 37-year-old was being kept in protective custody in an at-risk unit so he would be safe from other inmates.
"There's a perception that James Parker is another Beast of Blenheim. That's not only unfair on James Parker, it's unfair on the community," Mr Witten-Hannah said.
"The people of Kaitaia should not be fearful that they have been exposed to anything like that. There was no violence, no threat of violence and no intimidation."
Mr Witten-Hannah said the lack of violence was recognised by police when they agreed to drop four charges of sexual violation. That charge carried a maximum penalty of 20 years' jail and was almost always laid for violent offences.
Nonetheless, a prison term for Parker was inevitable, he said.
Despite Wednesday's guilty pleas, police enquiries were continuing.
Detective Senior Sergeant Kevin Burke said police had set up a dedicated 0800 number as part of that investigation.
"Should any member of the public have information that may assist with the investigation we ask that they call 0800 900 502," he said.
The charges to date are 16 counts of an indecent act on boy aged under 12, 24 of indecent assault on a boy aged 12-16, four charges of sexual connection with child aged under 12, and five charges of sexual connection with a young person aged 12-16.