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Stoke-on-Trent pervert addicted of looking at photos of boys being abused
Pervert Mathew Thwaites was caught with more than 1,500 child abuse images on his computers.
The 23-year-old downloaded the photos when he was a teenager but retained them and went back to looking at them when he was using drink and drugs.
Most of the images were of boys and a small number were of very young children.
Police also found an extreme pornographic image and inquiries showed he had sent an indecent image of a child to another like-minded individual.
Now Thwaites has been sentenced to a three-year community order with a requirement to attend the sex offender group work programme, a rehabilitation activity requirement for 30 days and 160 hours unpaid work.
Prosecutor Nick Tatlow said police went to the defendant’s Stoke-on-Trent home on December 13, 2018 and recovered two iPhones, an iPad, and two computers.
Mr Tatlow said: “There were indecent images of children and extreme pornographic images on one device and indecent images of children on the two computers.”
In total, police found 1,066 images at category C, 175 at category B and 276 at category A – the most serious.
Mr Tatlow said some of the images were of children who were ‘very young indeed’.
He added: “Further inquiries showed there was a WhatsApp conversation between the defendant and another man on May 11, 2018 during which the defendant sent a category A image to the other man.”
In his police interview the defendant said he started to look at indecent images of children when he was aged 15. He accepted responsibility for all the images. He said he used an app called Tumbler and added he had not viewed them for three months.
Thwaites, of Wignall Road, Sandyford, pleaded guilty to three offences of making indecent images of children, distributing an indecent image and possession of an extreme pornographic image.
The judge said the delay in the defendant being charged and the case coming to court has been a ‘quite significant degree of punishment’ for Thwaites who has used the time to try and turn his life around.
He said the community order was a direct alternative to a 12 to 15 month prison sentence.