April 2009

Darwen man ‘subscribed to child porn website’

A DARWEN man subscribed to a website where he could view child porn images over the internet, a court heard.

Gordon Clough, 48, of Ribble Avenue, Darwen, probably accessed a website that had as many as 20,000 files for people to look at.

He had looked at some 59 pornographic images of children, some very young and barely older than toddlers.

Clough pleaded guilty to 14 counts of making indecent images of children. He was given a three year community order with a condition that he undetakes a sex offender programme.

He will also be on a three months long curfew to be at home from 9pm-6am.

Emma Kehoe, prosecuting, said information was received by Lancashire police that the defendant had made payment, via a pay pal account, to a website containing indecent images of children.

It was believed it was a particular site that contained 20,000 files for people to view of female minors in sexual activity with adults. If someone paid, they would have access to the site for a one month period.

Adrian Williams, defending, said the case involved a ‘relatively modest number of images. The material had been put in a computer file, simply to ensure no-one else would be aware of it.

He did not intend to distribute or print them.

Judge Stuart Baker said: “You must understand that the law takes a very serious and dim view of abuse of children and in particular, sexual abuse of children.

“There is no suggestion you have physically abused any child yourself.

“But everybody who participates in this activity of downloading material, paying for it over the internet, is indirectly paying money to the people who do commit the abuse”.

He was told he will be on the sex offenders register for five years. Clough was ordered to pay £400 towards prosecution costs.