August 2020

Children’s entertainer and balloon artist gave himself up to police

A children’s entertainer gave himself up to police after his horrified girlfriend found child sexual abuse images on his tablet, a court heard. 

Samuel Stamp-Dod’s girlfriend found an indecent picture of a ten-year-old on the balloon artist’s tablet and went on to find more child sexual abuse images, prosecutor Matthew Bagnall told Ipswich Crown Court.

She had gone downstairs early in the morning for a glass of water when she made the grim discovery. 

She immediately ended their relationship, and told him he should turn himself in to the police.

The entertainer, who has won awards for his balloon sculptures, went to Ipswich police station, spoke to officers and handed them his phone.

A police examination of his devices found 216 indecent images of the most serious kind – category A – along with 304 at category B and 1,030 at category C.

Stamp-Dod, of Ipswich, 46, admitted three counts of making indecent images of children and possessing an extreme pornographic image on January 5 last year.

Judge Emma Peters told him that ‘those who view indecent images fuel child abuse.’

She added: ‘This is why you should hang your head in shame. It has an enormous and devastating impact on the lives of children.’

Stamp-Dod was given an eight months jail sentence, suspended for two years, and up to 60 rehabilitation activity days.

He must also sign the sex offenders’ register for ten years and was made subject to a ten-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order.

July 2020

Balloon artist turned himself in after indecent images of children found

A professional balloon artist is facing a possible jail sentence after being caught with hundreds of indecent images of children.

Award winning balloon sculptor Samuel Stamp-Dod shopped himself to police after his then girlfriend discovered the images at the beginning of last year.

The 46-year-old appeared at Ipswich Crown Court on Friday to admit three counts of making indecent images of children and one count of possessing an extreme pornographic image on January 5, 2019.

Stamp-Dod, who runs VIP Balloons from his address in Hayhill Road, Ipswich, was told he could face custody when sentenced next month following the preparation of a report by the probation service.

The court heard Stamp-Dod reported to his local police station after his now ex-girlfriend made the discovery.

During a plea hearing on Friday, he admitted making 216 images of children in the most serious category of indecency, making 304 category B images, making 1,030 category C images and possession of an extreme pornographic image.

The court heard Stamp-Dod’s relationship with his girlfriend had ended following the discovery.

Judge Emma Peters told him: “You have pleaded guilty to very serious charges. The charges are taken so seriously because these images depict the abuse of children.”

Judge Peters told Stamp-Dod to co-operate fully with the probation service during the preparation of a pre-sentence report.

She warned that all options, including custody, would be open to the sentencing judge

Stamp-Dod was ordered to begin signing the sex offenders’ register from the day of his conviction.

Mr Pollington said his client was fully aware of the obligations he must comply with following his conviction as a sex offender.

A sentencing hearing is due to take place at Ipswich Crown Court on Friday, August 21.

Stamp-Dod is the former chairman of the Ipswich & Suffolk Small Business Association (ISSBA).

On the VIP balloons website, he describes himself as having been a professional balloon artist since 2001.