May 2005

Pensioner jailed over indecent images of children

A pensioner who was caught secretly filming two young naked girls playing in the Diana Memorial Fountain in Hyde Park has been jailed for 15 months.

Selwyn Cook, 65, of Thornton Heath, Surrey, was spotted zooming in on the girls in July last year.

He admitted charges of making and possessing indecent images of children at Southwark Crown Court on Friday.

Footage of youngsters climbing over the lions statues in Trafalgar Square was also found on his camcorder.

Officers recovered hundreds of illicit images on his home computers.

Earlier this week, the mayor warned parents to be on their guard against strangers using new technology to take pictures of children in public places.

Cook, who has eight previous convictions stretching back 33 years for preying on young girls, was also banned from taking any recording equipment into a public place where children might be playing.

Passing sentence Judge Christopher Hardy said: “You took advantage of young children in public places.

“Children are entitled to privacy and dignity and have the right to play without being interfered with.

“New technology is making it increasingly easier for this type of offence to be committed and is all the more reason why this sort of behaviour has to be discouraged.”