Paedophile found with hundreds of indecent images of children and sick porn
A paedophile has avoided a prison sentence after he was caught with hundreds of indecent images of child abuse images and animal pornography on his laptop
Lee Hilton, 45, was sent the illegal images in online chatrooms – some were of children as young as two-years-old.
Police found the pictures on his laptop after searching his Stalybridge home in 2018.
The device contained 251 category A images, described as the worst kind of child abuse, 92 category B images and 72 category C images.
It also contained 60 extreme pornographic images which involved animals, Minshull Street Crown Court heard.
Hilton said he uploaded the pictures into chatrooms to ‘deter others from engaging with children’.
But a judge branded him a ‘child abuser’ as she sentenced him to a suspended jail term.
Prosecutor Matthew Howarth told the court how police tracked down Hilton after receiving intelligence from the National Crime Agency.
A category C image had been sent to an IP address which matched the defendant’s phone.
Hilton was arrested in December 2018 and his devices were seized by officers.
“He was interviewed following his arrest and made a series of admissions that he had uploaded the photos and had posed as a child to deter others from engaging with children on the same site”, Mr Howarth added.
“He then stated he would pose as a woman called Emma who was a mother of an eight-year-old girl.
“He said this lasted for a few years and he would uploaded images around twice a week.
“Most of the images were stored on his laptop. A forensic examination of them showed that a number of the images were moving videos and one showed a girl aged two to four-years-old.
“He actively involved in chatrooms where he was in discussion with other individuals and receiving image via email.”
Judge Bernadette Baxter agreed that there was ‘some hope for rehabilitation’.
In sentencing, she told Hilton: “You have lost your good character by your guilty pleas.
“These are real children being abused by real adults to satisfy a market that is occupied by you.
“It must have been obvious to you that it was real children who were being abused so you are a child abuser and a peadophile.
“You pleaded guilty at first opportunity and have been candid and have some insight as to how you got yourself in this situation.
“Your guilty plea together with your age and your previous good character and the contents of the pre-sentence report which gives some hope for rehabilitation allows me to suspend your sentence.”
Hilton, of Bramble Court, Millbrook, Stalybridge, pleaded guilty to three counts of making indecent photos of children and one count of possessing extreme pornographic images involving animals.
He was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment suspended for two years.
He was ordered to complete 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days and a ‘making changes’ programme.
He will also have to sign the sex offender’s register and will be subject of a Sexual Harm Prevention Order for 10 years.