A Dartford man has avoided jail

A DARTFORD man has avoided jail after pleading guilty to possessing and making indecent images of children.

Russel Chambers, of Turner Court, had previously pleaded guilty to four counts of possessing indecent images of children, one count of possessing an extreme pornographic image and one count of making an indecent image of a child.

Today (December 16) at Maidstone Crown Court the 40-year-old was handed a 36-month community order and was told to attend the Thames Valley Sex Offender Groupwork Programme for a minimum of 80 sessions.

Judge Jeremy Gold told him: “What you have to appreciate is when you download those disgusting images doing so perpetuates the sexual abuse of children and that’s what makes it such a serious matter.

“What you deserve is a suspended sentence order.”

He added: “If you re-offend during the next three years you will go to prison which many people will say is what you deserve.”

The court heard indecent images of children were found on various pieces of equipment owned by Chambers.

In total there were 386 level one images, 26 level two images, 27 level three images, 35 level four images and five level five images – the most serious level possible.

Dickon Reid, defending, said: “His greatest mitigation is his guilty plea and he is of good character.”

“He is 40 years of age, of impeccable character until this point. He now has the social stigma. His wife knows about it and his family knows about it.”

Chambers was also ordered to sign the sex offenders register for five years and pay prosecution costs of £800.

A forfeiture order was also made to take away Chambers’ media player, hard drive, laptop and computer tower.