August 2017

Pervert who fled to Glasgow caught with 11,000 child abuse images

A paedophile who was found to have more than 11,000 still and moving images showing the rape of children has been sentenced to five years and four months in prison.

Christopher Knee appeared at Swindon Crown Court on Friday to be sentenced for 12 offences relating to the possession and distribution of videos and pictures of a sexual nature that involved children, animals and babies.

The 22-year-old first appeared at Swindon Magistrates’ Court on May 3 where he pleaded guilty to the offences. He was told that the offending was so serious he would be sentenced by a judge.

Knee has been living near Glasgow having fled Swindon when investigations into his offending first came to light.

The court heard how he came to the attention of the police as a result of investigations by the National Crime Agency.

Officers raided his address in January 2016 and his electronic devices were seized. Large numbers of still and moving images, many in category A which is the most serious, were found by specialist investigators.

Tessa Hingston, prosecuting, said: “This defendant was identified as a person accessing and sharing indecent images using online file sharing websites. He used his real name and email address. “The devices that were seized each had high volumes of indecent images.”

Ms Hingston went on to outline that, in total, there were 3,183 images and videos in category A, 5,971 in category B and 2,191 in category C.

She added: “When officers examined the devices they found numerous chat messages discussing the sharing of images.”

The judge was asked to take into account aggravating features including the age and vulnerability of the children – some were babies, the “discernible pain” they were experiencing, the high volume of images and the number of people to whom they were distributed.

Sentencing Knee to a total of five years and four months in prison, Recorder Richard Onslow said: “These images were some of the worst imaginable kinds of utterly depraved acts against children, including babies. You had evidently searched for these images and discussed the sexual abuse of children with other parties.

Knee will serve half of his sentence in prison and half in the community on licence. He will be subject to a ten year Sexual Harm Prevention Order and will be placed on the sex offender’s register indefinitely.

His electronic devices will be destroyed.