Pervert caught in police sting messaging girls as young as 12

CAUGHT: Bruno Quintalo was caught in a police sting operation. Picture: West Mercia Police

A polce sting operation caught a city man sending sexualised messages to children, including one in which he tried to meet up with a 12-year-old, a court heard.

Bruno Quintalo narrowly avoided jail when he was sentenced at Worcester Crown Court on Friday.

Prosecuting Michael Hall said Quintalo joined a teen chat site online and on May 17 spoke to a girl calling herself ‘Little Miss Princess’, who said she was 14-years-old.

Mr Hall said the messages turned sexual, with the 36-year-old asking the girl if she “wanted fun” and asking her to take part in sex on camera.

Just a few days later Quintalo was on another site, pretending to be a 29-year-old from Pershore, and this time talking to a girl who said she was 12-years-old.

Again the chat moved to sexualised content with Quintalo asking if she “wanted to do it” and if not if she wanted to “do other stuff”, suggesting places they could meet up, including a hotel room or his car, and saying he would bring her sweets.

Mr Hall said police viewed this as “grooming behaviour”.

Both the children were in fact officers posing as children and Quintalo was later arrested at his home in Southfield Street, with his electronic devices examined and linking him to the chats.

Mr Hall added that in interview Quintalo laughed at points in the conversation, telling them he must have been drunk.

Judge Nicolas Cartwright, in sentencing, said: “You clearly pose a real risk to children, should you have been in contact of this kind with a real child. This is why police patrol these sites, to catch adults like you.”

The judge added that he recognised Quintalo had no previous relative convictions, and said sending him to prison would not help address his underlying issues.

The judge said it was “not a soft alternative” as he sentenced Quintalo to a 24-month community order in which he will have to complete a programme for sexual offenders, and 15 rehabilitation days. Quintalo was also given a sexual harm prevention order, restricting his online activity to reduce his risk of reoffending.