A medieval re-enactment enthusiast who used his golden cloak to hide his hands as he groped women while playing the part of the 1st Earl of Pembroke, was warned he would face jailed last night after being convicted by a jury.

"Pillar of the community" Trevor Pilling, from Lycrome Lane, Chesham, was accused of preying on vulnerable women in their own homes - even when their husbands and family were stood outside the door. He also abused women in hotels and during public re-enactments.

A jury at Aylesbury Crown Court convicted the 78-year-old retired accountant of 12 counts of sexual assault on eight women on Thursday afternoon.

Judge Catherine Tulk told Pilling he was to return to Aylesbury Crown Court in a week to be sentenced for the attacks scattered across the 1990s and 2000.

Kim Preston, prosecuting, had told the jury of six women and six men that the women victims were no doubt shocked and frozen by Pilling's sexual advances and she described him as "a sexual menace."

Pilling had been a "significant member" of The Lion Rampant Medieval Display Society, the court was told. 

"The defendant was a man that was held in quite high regard in his community, no doubt," said Miss Preston.

"He was much respected by those he met... and those involved as being a leading light in that society. He used his position and used that charismatic trusted role, in different ways on a number of different women over the years and took advantage of the circumstances to take advantage of particular types of women - particularly those that were in a vulnerable part of their life, or physically vulnerable."

The jury was told that Pilling favoured wearing a golden floor length cape over his authentic medieval costume and would wrap it around women to hide his fondling.

Among the allegations were the fact that Pilling stood behind one woman when she was in darkness and groped her breasts.

The court heard Pilling "encircled" women with his large medieval cloak during re-enactments so he could cup their breasts and then "carry on as if nothing had happened."

"It is something he later did quite regularly and had even been known as encircling," Miss Preston told the jury at Aylesbury Crown Court.

"On one occasion, he allegedly placed his hand on the back of one woman, who had recently had an operation, and told her he had "healing hands" that "could heal her" and he could "see a shadow on her back."

Miss Preston said the complainant thought it was "preposterous" and "silly" and declined the offer.

"On another occasion he slid his hand down on her back and bottom and pinched her buttocks," she said.

"She said he was crossing a line she didn't want him to cross and she felt uncomfortable. She was lacking in confidence of speaking out against him, but she moved away and gave him a rather wide berth."

It was claimed Pilling would carry out crystal treatments at his house, while his wife was there, on female members in order to sexually assault them.

One of the victims phoned Pilling to berate him about his "squalid" and "opportunistic" behaviour, where she told him "if you ever touch me again there will be consequences."

The court heard Pilling's daughter was so sickened by her father's behaviour when the women told her of his crimes, that she reported him to the police.

When interviewed by officers, Pilling said in a prepared statement, that the accusations were untrue but refused to answer any other questions.

"These offences spanning a 25 year period from the early 1980s to 2007 show this defendant as a sexual menace," said Miss Preston.

"He has been indecently assaulting both younger and older women. Then with these treatments, I don't want to call them bogus as he might have spiritual talents, with women in their 40s, 50s, and even approaching their 60s."

Pilling denied a total of 12 counts of indecent and sexual assaults on eight women between 1982 and 2007.

He was released on bail and ordered to attend the same court on March 15 for sentencing.