June 2021

Pervert caught with indecent images of children for third time in 16 years

Pervert Paul Gibbings has been caught with indecent images of children – for a third time – and has avoided prison for a third time

Police discovered the 28 deleted images via a USB stick and laptop after visiting the 58-year-old’s home in 2019.

It comes as Gibbings has twice completed three-year community orders after being caught with child abuse images in 2003 and 2012.

He was already subject to a Sexual Harm Prevention Order (SHPO).

Now the defendant has avoided jail for a third time – after being handed a 12-month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

Prosecutor Antony Longworth told Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court: “There were four images at category A – the most serious; three at category B and 21 at category C. They had been deleted and were inaccessible.”

In his police interview, the defendant told officers there was a possibility that there were images of girls under the age of 18 on his devices. He said he used free wifi in hotels to get around the protective system on his phone and then viewed the images on his television at home.

Mr Longworth added: “He said he would view the images and delete them. He said he had a quick look at people underage and kept them for a while so he could view the images at a later date through the TV.”

Gibbings, of Cliff Street, Smallthorne, pleaded guilty to three offences of making indecent images of children and breaching his SHPO.

The suspended sentence includes a 55-day rehabilitation activity requirement and an accredited sex offender programme.

Judge David Fletcher said: “This is the third time in your life that you have appeared in court in connection with this type of offending.

“You simply do not seem to understand the consequences of not complying with these sorts of orders.

“Four category A images were looked at and deleted by you.

“You are entitled to credit. You pleaded guilty in the magistrates’ court. There is still a considerable amount of work that can be achieved with you.

“Do I send you to prison for a comparatively short period of time and without any further intervention or do I go down the route that gives you further intervention.”

Gibbings was also handed an indefinite SHPO and placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register for 10 years.

April 2012

Pervert to be kicked out of running club

A 49-year-old paedophile caught with hundreds of indecent images of children is set to be kicked out of his running club.

Paul Gibbings was handed a three-year community sentence at Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court last week after admitting having 347 images of children as young as nine.

It has emerged that Gibbings, of Cliff Street, Smallthorne, was a keen member of Trentham Running Club, (TRC) attending training sessions and social nights.

Now the club – which has members as young as eight – is planning to expel Gibbings.

Some members have criticised the speed at which the club has taken action, since Gibbings pleaded guilty on Tuesday.

But TRC president Ken Rushton said the club had to be careful it was following guidelines.

Mr Rushton said: “We wrote to Paul following his first court appearance.

“We knew he was innocent until proven guilty, but we asked him not to attend training, due to the nature of the charges and the fact we have a junior section. To be fair, we haven’t seen him since.

“Ten years ago, he would have been kicked out as soon as he was convicted. But we can’t do that now, we have to go through the right procedure.

“We’ve written to UK Athletics, the sport’s governing body, and asked for its advice. Hopefully they will get back to us in time for our meeting on Tuesday. We were all shocked when we found out about Paul. He wasn’t really the loner described in court, as he came to all the training sessions and attended our social events.

“He never did anything to raise our suspicions.”

Runner Ian Yates has resigned from the club after 15 years after accusing the club of deliberately keeping the Gibbings’s affair quiet.

He feared the club’s indecision would reflect badly on his attempts to adopt with his wife Claire.

The 37-year-old, of Flash, said: “I don’t think they’ve dealt with this very well.

“When members have asked questions they haven’t answered them.

“As soon as the verdict was delivered they should have said he was no longer a member of the club.

“It’s not the club’s fault that he was a member.

“Nobody knew what he was really like. But they should have done more after he was convicted.”

Gibbings was also sentenced to a 10-year sexual offenders’ prevention order by the court.