February 2021

Basildon paedophile Christopher Spooner jailed for 8 years

A sexual predator who shared thousands of indecent images of children with other paedophiles has been given an extended prison sentence.

Christopher Spooner created a group on an online chat programme to share images and videos with other individuals from across the world.

Officers also found emails and online chat threads in which Spooner encouraged a man to sexually abuse a child and send him videos and images of the abuse.

The registered sex offender was arrested on January 11 last year after Essex Police’s online investigation team (POLIT) received information he was accessing indecent images of children – and breaching a sexual harm prevention order.

Spooner’s home in Pattiswick Square, Basildon, was searched by officers who seized mobile phones and memory cards.

More than 14,500 indecent images and videos of children were found on the devices.

Spooner had also shared 411 images on two online chat groups in the 12 days up to and including the day of his arrest.

The 42-year-old admitted two counts of distributing indecent images of children, three counts of making indecent images of children, and one count of breaching a sexual harm prevention order.

He initially denied five counts of arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sex offence but changed his plea to guilty.

Spooner, who has been on remand in prison since his arrest, was jailed for the 11 offences at Basildon Crown Court yesterday, Wednesday 24 February.

He was sentenced to 14 years, comprising of eight years imprisonment and six years on licence when he leaves jail.

He has been placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register indefinitely.

As part of the police investigation, 180 emails and online conversations were found involving sexual offences that resulted in further separate investigations.  

This has led to six other suspects being found elsewhere in the UK whom Spooner had been in contact with.

These individuals have been arrested and are currently going through the courts or investigations have been completed.

July 2011

Man jailed over indecent child images

A MAN has been jailed for more than four years over indecent images of children.

Christopher Spooner, 33, of Monkswood Avenue, Waltham Abbey, was sentenced in his absence at Chelmsford Crown Court on Monday, July 11, to serve four years and eight months in prison with an extended licence of five years.

Spooner previously admitted assaulting a young boy, photographing the abuse and distributing those images.

He was also involved in the worldwide sharing of indecent images of young boys and babies.

Detective Constable Phil Merriam said: “The Essex Police online investigation team would echo the comments of Her Honour Judge Walden-Smith sentencing at Chelmsford Crown Court, who said that Spooner poses a very high risk to children and of re-offending.

“The sentencing also reflects the strong link between the use of indecent material and offending against children.

“We are pleased that justice has been done in this case and hope that those involved are now able to move forward in the knowledge that children are now protected from a dangerous man.”

Spooner will be subject to monitoring and restrictions for the rest of his life having been placed on the sex offenders’ register for life and made subject of a sexual offences prevention order (SOPO).