July 2013

Man caught with 30,000 child abuse images is jailed

leslie

An Ipswich man who downloaded nearly 30,000 child abuse images had been subjected to vigilante attacks including being spat at and having slogans daubed on his house, a court has heard.

Leslie Keitch, 51, of Shenstone Drive, Ipswich, admitted seven charges of making indecent images of children and one offence of possessing indecent images of children with a view to distributing them.

Jailing him for 32 months Ipswich Crown Court judge David Goodin said Keitch had a “most unhealthy interest” in images showing the sexual abuse of children for around 14 years.

He said some of the images were particularly “horrific and distressing” and showed children who were obviously in great distress or pain.

He condemned the vigilante actions taken against Keitch but said they were the result of public revulsion at the sort of images he had been viewing.

In addition to jailing Keitch Judge Goodin made him the subject of a sexual offences prevention order and ordered him to sign the sex offenders’ register indefinitely.

Frances Coles-Harrington, prosecuting, said police had seized computer equipment from Keitch’s home and found more than 29,000 indecent images and movies of children.

She said that on a scale of one to five with level five being the most serious more than 19,000 of the images were at level one while there were 121 indecent images and 79 movies at level five.

When Keitch was interviewed by police about the indecent images he said he had lived alone since 1996 when he was divorced and accepted the computer equipment found at his house belonged to him and was used by him.

Steven Dyble, for Keitch, said his client had been subjected to vigilante attacks including having slogans painted on his house and being spat at in the street.

He said Keitch had 16 unblemished years service in the army and had left after being made redundant. He had found work as a warehouse manager but faced losing that job as a result of the court proceedings.

He said Keitch had taken steps to make sure the images on his computer couldn’t inadvertantly be looked at by anyone but denied there was a degree of sophistication in what he was doing.

Mr Dyble said Keitch had used his own address on a website and this had resulted in the discovery of the images. He said many of the images were duplicates.