July 2020

Teaching assistant bought online catalogue of child sexual abuse

A teaching assistant bought an online catalogue of child sexual abuse using £365 of Amazon vouchers.

Kevin Sheppard, 26, bought the abuse footage between June and September 2018 and sent the seller eight different Amazon vouchers totalling £365.

Sheppard, who was employed as a teaching assistant at Huxlow Science College in Northamptonshire, specifically requested a video of a 15-year-old girl from the seller – who is the subject of another National Crime Agency (NCA) investigation.

None of Sheppard’s offences were linked to the college and he resigned the day after NCA officers arrested him in June 2019.

He was arrested at his home in Broadway, Kettering, Northants, where NCA officers recovered his iPhone and laptop.

Sheppard’s phone had an app which contained 46 category A (the most severe) images of child abuse; 19 category B and 35 category C.

His laptop contained 17 category B videos of child sexual abuse and 10 category C images.

In interview Sheppard admitted being sexually attracted to young girls and downloading and viewing the abuse.

Yesterday, at Northampton Magistrates’ Court, Sheppard admitted three counts of making indecent images of children (IIOC) between September 2014 and July 2019, and one count of encouraging the distribution of IIOC in July 2018.

He will be sentenced on 25 August at Northampton Crown Court.