January 2021

Paedophile caught with ‘doll-sized sex doll’ and film of toddler being raped

A paedophile has been caught for a third time with indecent images of children as well as admitting he used a sex doll while watching online pornography.

When police searched his house they also found a “doll-sized sex doll” which the defendant said he used while watching pornography.

David Richard Mansel William Lee Smith was handed a suspended sentence on his last court appearance but sending him down for his new offending a judge said there was “no prospect” of rehabilitation in his case.

Swansea Crown Court heard police went to Smith’s home in Port Talbot in October last year home following information received from a so-called paedophile hunter group.

Dean Pulling, prosecuting, said the defendant was arrested on allegations of child grooming and was told to hand over his internet-enabled devices. He gave officers a phone, laptop, and PlayStation games console.

A subsequent search of the property showed the 26-year-old was using a bedroom for the production of cannabis and had installed a growing tent, a drying tent, lamps, filters, and a hydroponic feeding system.

Five living plants and another three which had been harvested were recovered. The barrister characterised it as a “relatively small” set-up but one which showed “a degree of knowledge”.

The court heard the police also found a “doll-sized sex doll” at the property.

Mr Pulling said the following day an officer returned to the defendant’s home to dismantle the cannabis tents and equipment and while he was in the bedroom heard a phone ringing.

Following the ringtone he went to the window in the room and found another phone, which Smith had not disclosed, had been put on the far end of the external window sill.

An examination of the phone showed two films of child abuse hidden in a folder. One, more than six minutes long, showed a toddler aged between two and four being raped.

In his subsequent interview Smith said he had learned how to grow cannabis by watching videos online and had spent around £1,000 on the equipment and another £60 on seeds.

He said he used the crop to make cannabis cakes which he used to treat his “low mood” and his “lack of focus”.

The defendant told officers he used the sex doll while watching online pornography.

Smith, of Vivian Park Drive, Sandfields, Port Talbot, had previously pleaded guilty to two counts of possessing an indecent image and one count of producing cannabis when he appeared in the dock for sentencing.

The court heard that in 2017 he was sentenced to 15 months in prison suspended for two years and ordered to complete a rehabilitation course after police twice found indecent images on his phone – once in 2016 and then again in 2017 while being investigated for the first matter.

Officers also found he had taken part in Skype video chats with other people where they had discussed the sexual abuse of children.

Judge Paul Thomas QC said it was concerning that Smith had now been found in possession of indecent material on three separate occasions.

He said that given the defendant’s offending history he had come to conclusion that there was “no prospect of rehabilitation” in his case and that a sentence of immediate custody was necessary.

Giving the defendant credit for his guilty pleas – a quarter for the indecent images charges and a third for the cannabis charge – the judge sentenced him to a total of nine months in prison.

Smith will serve up to half that period in custody before being released on licence to serve the remainder in the community.

The defendant will be on the sex offenders register for the next 10 years and was made the subject of a sexual harm prevention order to control his access to the internet for the same length of time.

Sending the defendant down, Judge Thomas warned him: “If you come back before a court again for a similar kind of offending you will be going to prison for a very long time. Do you understand?”

The court heard that though Smith was charged with a grooming offence following the involvement of the paedophile hunter group in October last year the matter was later discontinued.