February 2021

Paedophile edited little girl’s picture on to sex abuse image and said it was ‘art’

A paedophile who edited a picture of a little girl onto a sex abuse image claimed it was ‘art’.

Peter Chubb of Cooper Street, St Helens superimposed the girl’s face onto the indecent image and saved it on his computer 204 times.

But a court heard how he said it was “some kind of art”, a claim which a district judge at Liverpool Magistrates’ Court branded “nonsense”.

Lydia Durkin, prosecuting, explained that police executed a warrant on August 19, 2019, at Chubb’s home, where the internet had been used to access indecent images of children.

Ms Durkin said the officers “had cause to search the property and came across things on the internet search” and a “large amount of computer equipment” was searched.

The court heard the same picture of a child imposed onto an indecent image were downloaded hundreds of times, and the girl’s mother was called to identify her daughter in the picture.

In a victim impact statement the girl’s mum said: “I was sick to my stomach.

“I try to put on a brave face for the family. I hope he realises what damage has been caused by his actions. I just want all of this to be over.”

District Judge Hatton said: “My concern is the fact that, for want of a better expression, he has photoshopped the image and my concern this morning was the way in which I was being asked to sentence.

“It is possession of an image, there is an aggravating feature here which in my mind makes it pass the custody threshold.”

District Judge Hatton, sentencing, said: “This is a horrible thing you have done – there is no other way of putting it.

“The explanation you have given in the pre sentence report doesn’t make any sense and I reject it.”

The district judge explained he had to adhere to sentencing guidelines, set by the Sentencing Council, for possession of the same image saved 204 times.

The district judge noted his prompt guilty plea and told Chubb a suspended sentence was most appropriate.

He handed Chubb a six month sentence suspended for two years and imposed an indefinite restraining order preventing him from contacting the child.

He must complete 40 Rehabilitation Activity Requirements and a six week curfew from 7pm to 7am was imposed.

Chubb must also pay £85 costs and a victim surcharge of £122.

He must also sign the Sex Offenders Register for seven years.