July 2019

Notorious paedophile caught using Grimsby library computers and contacting sex offender on Xbox Live

One of Grimsby’s most notorious sex offenders has been caught using computers at Grimsby’s main library to secretly access the internet.

The courts were so concerned about Aaron Smith’s behaviour after being released from jail he was banned from using any computer without showing what he had been looking at.

He had a history of downloading horrific images of child abuse and contacting other paedophiles to discuss abuse and share images.

But instead Smith, 31, continued to use the net, using various methods to try to conceal what he had been doing, Grimsby Crown Court heard.

He used Grimsby Central Library computers on six occasions between October and November but it was not known what he had viewed because the history was lost when a user logged off. Smith had used the computers at the library for a total of one hour and 53 minutes and had been a library member for several years.

In another breach, Smith did not tell police about a second name he had then used  to contact a sex offender in Leeds via Xbox Live.

There was no internet history of the messages for Smith and they were traced only via the other sex offender.

He also reset his phone scrubbing most of his search history.

The court heard the offences were a “blatant disregard” for a court order designed to protect children from harm.

Smith, of Haycroft Street, Grimsby, admitted breaching a sexual harm prevention order and breaching his notification requirements.

Craig Lowe, prosecuting, told the court that Smith had been jailed for public protection in 2012 for 10 offences of making indecent images of children and another of distributing images.

He had been given an indefinite sexual harm prevention order with conditions including that he did not delete his internet history.

But police discovered the multiple breaches of the order and suspicious activity online.

Judge John Thackray QC said: “It’s a dangerous breach because there is no way of knowing what he was looking at.”

He had convictions for 40 previous offences, including a series for indecent exposure as well as indecent assault and outraging public decency.

He had also been jailed for two years and 10 months for robbery.

Judge Thackray said: “This was repeated offending. You were determined to prevent the authorities assessing your risk and managing your risk within the community.

“You had a blatant disregard for these orders.”

Smith was jailed for another two years but will not be released until the Parole Board decides under the public protection provisions that his risk can be safely managed.

In 2012 Smith was jailed for two years after the same court heard he had committed a string of “vile and disgusting” offences.

Smith, then 24 and living in Arthur Street in Grimsby, downloaded hundreds of indecent images of children – many of them involving babies and toddlers – and forwarded some to a 14-year-old girl.

Almost 900 indecent images were found on his computer, some categorised by police as Level 5, the most explicit and horrific class possible.

The court heard he started offending when he was just 13 years old and had dozens of convictions for exposing and touching himself in public, including being found naked in People’s Park.

Passing a sentence for public protection, Recorder Mark Bury said: “These were vile and disgusting offences.

“You have a sexually deviant preference for young children and a lifestyle which means you are determined, almost, to find thrills of a sexual nature.

“I believe you pose a significant risk of causing severe psychological and physical harm through your actions.”

As well as being jailed he was made the subject of a lifetime SOPO and will also sign on the sex offenders’ register for life.

May 2012

Locked up to protect public

A PROLIFIC paedophile who committed a string of “vile and disgusting” offences has been jailed for a minimum of two years.

Aaron Smith, 24, of Arthur Street, Grimsby, downloaded hundreds of indecent images of children – many of them involving babies and toddlers – and forwarded a number of them to a 14-year-old girl via the inter net.

Almost 900 indecent images were found on his computer, some of them categorised by police as Level 5 images – the most explicit and horrific class possible. Grimsby Crown Court heard how he began offending when he was just 13 years old and had dozens of convictions for exposing and touching himself in public, including being found naked in People’s Park.

Passing a sentence for public protection, Recorder Mark Bury said: “These were vile and disgusting offences.

“You have a sexually deviant preference for young children and a lifestyle which means you are determined, almost, to find thrills of a sexual nature.

“I believe you pose a significant risk of causing severe psychological and physical harm through your actions.”

He ordered Smith serve a minimum of two years and not be released until his “sexual interest in children has dissipated.” Simon Hirst, prosecuting, said Smith was subject to a community order made for previous sexual offences when officers discovered a laptop containing the latest images at his home in April last year.

Investigations revealed he had also visited online forums where he had discussed sexual abuse of children. On one occasion, he sent indecent images of children to a 14-year-old girl. Craig Lowe, mitigating, argued Smith had a “small number” of photographs compared with some paedophiles. Mr Lowe said: “He has Asperger’s syndrome, which affects his ability to consider the consequences of his actions.

“He does not want to reoffend and wants help to make sure he doesn’t. He has been using his time in custody productively by undertaking literacy and numeracy courses.”

Smith admitted one count of making indecent images of children, one count of distributing indecent images of children and one of breaching a Sexual Offenders’ P reve n -tion Order (SOPO).

He was made the subject of a lifetime SOPO and will also sign on the sex offenders’ register for life.