August 2008

Vicar guilty of downloading abusive images of young girls is jailed for a year

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A vicar who downloaded child abuse images from the internet was yesterday jailed for 12 months. 

The Reverend Adrian Fereday, 50, was caught after police were tipped off over indecent images of children being distributed online.

He was arrested last November and admitted downloading images and film featuring adult males having sex with girls aged two to nine. 

Fereday, the vicar of Letwell, Firbeck and Woodsetts, near Worksop, Nottinghamshire, said he had been accessing child pornography for several years, claiming he suffered with depression. 

Judge Simon Lawler said : ‘I would have to say that it is beyond belief that anyone, let alone a man of the cloth who has worked with children, could have contemplated seeking out such material.’ 

Sheffield Crown Court heard that the vicar, who has two sons aged 12 and 14, was divorced from his wife Valerie this week. 

He admitted 16 counts of making indecent images of a child and one of possessing indecent images. 

Judge Lawler told him: ‘Those who seek out and view such material encourage and promote this wicked exploitation of very young children.’ 

Fereday was banned from working with children and will be made subject to a Sex Offenders’ Prevention Order.