Febuary 2004

Teacher admits child porn offences

A primary school teacher who admitted taking indecent images of pupils with a concealed camera has been jailed for three and a half years.

Maurice Turner, 54, of Worsley, Greater Manchester, hid the digital video camera in a specially adapted laptop bag while working as a supply teacher at schools in Salford.

He targeted young pupils and then traded the images with other people on the internet.

Turner was caught when police found his details on a computer during an investigation into child pornography in Cumbria.

They seized his computer and found more than 2,500 indecent, live images of children.

Addicted to pornography

Turner pleaded guilty to nine counts of making indecent photographs of children, five counts of taking indecent photographs of children and four counts of distributing indecent photographs of children.

He asked for another 30 offences to be taken into consideration.

Sentencing at Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester, Judge Jonathan Geake said he had heard how Turner’s “otherwise decent life had taken a shameful, disgraceful downturn”.

He said Turner had become desensitised, and addicted to pornographic images on the internet.

Computer ban

Judge Geake said: “It’s clear you were exchanging quite vile, disgusting internet texts.

“You have now acknowledged the gravity of your breaches of trust and the obvious abuse of internet pornography involved in relation to faceless, nameless children.

“An aggravating feature was in the production and distribution of images of children from local schools.

“These children’s identities, pictures and indecent photographs are now out there on the internet and cannot be stopped.”

Turner was disqualified from working with children again.

Any future access to children would need to be supervised by a person acceptable to social services, Judge Geake said.

Turner will remain on the Sex Offenders’ Register indefinitely and is disqualified from owning, having or using computer equipment or the internet, except in relation to future employment.