August 2011

Paedophile primary school volunteer hoarded hundreds of sexual images of children as young as three

A paedophile who kept more than 800 sexual photos and videos of children as young as three while working at a primary school has been spared jail.

Christopher Jones, 27, was caught after his flatmate logged onto his computer and found the disgusting library of images he had hoarded.

Jones had been volunteering at a school for years before police found that he had downloaded child pornography onto computers, mobile phones and memory sticks.

He has now been banned for life from working with young people.

The images found were of boys and girls, ranging in age from three to 14, including some from the most explicit-rated categories for this type of material.

Derby Crown Court heard that ashamed Jones, from Derby, had not told his family of his charges or his court appearance.

Sentencing him Judge Hilary Watson told how she was very concerned about the years of unlimited access Jones had to children.

‘That means you had daily and legitimate access to young children and it is clearly very concerning that, during that period, it would appear you had a collection of this material,’ she said.

He was placed on the sex offenders’ register for five years.

Handing Jones a three-year community order, Judge Watson said: ‘Some of the images are so deviant and unacceptable to normal human society that they have reached the highest categories – that means images of particular despicable content.’

Dangerous: Derby Crown Court (pictured) heard Jones is potentially someone who could move away from viewing images and get involved in ‘activities with children’

Jones admitted to 14 charges of making indecent images and was ordered to attend a sex offenders’ treatment programme.

Judge Watson said: ‘You have pleaded guilty to offences which are regarded by many as the most perverted and unpleasant kind – that is accessing internet material, described as child pornography, which is of real children photographed in compromising and sexually abusive positions.’

She added Jones was potentially someone who could move away from viewing images and get involved in ‘activities with children’.

Judge Watson said: ‘I hope this community order will prevent you from going down that route.’

Defending, Stuart Newsam said: ‘Where this sort of behaviour is concerned there’s always a process involved in the defendant coming to terms with their wrongdoing and the reasons for it.

‘The intervention he requires is not available in custody.’

He said Jones was confused about his motivation.

‘It was a compulsive behaviour that allowed him to dehumanise the victims. He now acknowledges he was part of a chain of abuse,’ Mr Newsam said.

‘He acknowledges that, had he not been caught, the access would have continued in all likelihood and he is willing to engage with a programme to find the motivation behind it and the reason for the fascination he developed over a period of two years.’

Jones must obey a sexual offences prevention order, which includes not going to public places where children under the age of 16 gather, such as schools, parks and swimming pools.

The school where Jones had volunteered was not disclosed in court and neither Derbyshire Police nor Derby City Council would reveal the information.

A spokeswoman for the police said: ‘Naming the school might cause undue distress to the parents at that school when all parents with young children should be assured that there was never any evidence to suggest he committed any offences against children in Derbyshire.’