January 2006

Man jailed for Africa sex tourism

A sex tourist arrested in Milton Keynes has been jailed indefinitely for making trips to Africa to abuse poor children.

Alexander Kilpatrick, a father-of-two, will serve at least five years and four months for 17 counts of sex offences.

The 56-year-old made “harrowing” films of the abuse, said Judge Roger Chapple, at Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court.

Kilpatrick, banned from Africa and other sex tourism hotspots, is the first man to be jailed using laws to prosecute those who abuse abroad.

He was arrested in Milton Keynes in a mobile home he used to tour England and where he had also groomed two vulnerable youngsters and sexually assaulted them.

Judge Chapple told Kilpatrick his offences “are specimen accounts of a wider course of conduct representing a catalogue of manipulation, corruption, depravity and degradation that even these courts fortunately rarely hear.

“You took advantage of the abject poverty and the circumstances in which children in Africa and other countries find themselves.

“You plied them with meals, treats and alcohol and then you sexually abused them in the most appalling ways.”

The court heard Kilpatrick transferred films of the abuse onto CD-Roms before editing them, setting them to Elvis songs, and then labelling them with his victims’ names.

Importing porn

A divorcee, he was arrested in May last year when a French holidaymaker from Ghana spotted him handing out toys during his latest trip.

He was subsequently deported and flown back to Heathrow.

In the UK, Kilpatrick was accused of importing pornography and an international investigation was launched.

Further pornographic films and photographs, some downloaded from the internet, were recovered from his mobile home.

His “obsession” with filming himself as he abused children helped police identify the two youngsters he targeted in Britain.

The judge told Kilpatrick he would have to register as a sex offender for life.

Speaking outside court, Det Sgt Nick Duffield, of Scotland Yard’s Paedophile Unit, said: “The internet is accounting for a lot of recognition of paedophile activity because of the nature of the internet itself.”

He added that police had worked closely with agencies in the UK and in Ghana to investigate Kilpatrick’s activities.

List of crimes

Paedophiles who travelled abroad to carry out their crimes would “be brought to book”, he said.

Natalie Cronin, NSPCC Head of Policy and Public Affairs said the children’s charity welcomed the prosecution.

“However, this legislation can only be exercised when the foreign country in question acknowledges child sexual abuse as a crime.

“The NSPCC believes the law should be extended to allow courts to prosecute UK nationals who commit sex offences against children in any country,” she said.

Kilpatrick, himself a victim of child abuse, was now “deeply ashamed” of his behaviour and wished to apologise for the pain and distress he had caused, said his defence lawyer Andrew Vout.

The counts he pleaded guilty to last year included three rapes, three attempted rapes, two assaults, one assault by penetration, an offence of causing a child to engage in sexual activity, another of administering a substance with intent, two charges of taking indecent photographs of children, two of possessing them, and one of importing pornography.

They all took place between 1 October 2004 and 8 May 2005.