Cirencester man, 56, who downloaded child abuse images avoids jail

A 56-year-old Cirencester man who admitted possessing 17 indecent images and videos of underage girls has walked free from court with a three year community order instead of being jailed for eight months.

Prosecutor Alec Small told Gloucester Crown Court yesterday (March 29) that Gloucestershire police received information from the National Crime Agency in May 2019 that indecent images of children were been accessed to the Kik messenger service from an IP address located at Martin Toomer’s home in Lewis Lane, Cirencester.

“Mr Toomer was arrested on June 17, 2019 following the execution of a search warrant. Toomer initially denied using Kik and denied accessing any indecent images,” said the barrister.

“Toomer’s home was searched and three items were seized – two laptops and a mobile phone. However he was too ill to be interviewed by police and was taken to hospital suffering from high blood pressure.

“After Toomer’s computers had been examined, the police found two category A images, the most serious category, seven images and two videos of category B and six in category C.

“He was interviewed in July 2020 and he maintained that at the time he had been under the influence of prescription drugs and that he wasn’t the only person using the three devices and he had no knowledge of the indecent images.”

The court heard that a number of pictures were on a computer that had not been accessed since 2016.

The court was told that in July 2000 Toomer had previously been jailed for two years for distribution of indecent images of young children.

Toomer admitted making and possessing 17 indecent images of a child between April 13, 2010 and June 8, 2019 in categories A, B and C.

Recorder Paul Garlick said to Toomer: “Ordinarily these offences should be dealt with by the imposition of an eight month custodial sentence. However, that doesn’t deal with your problems.

“Instead I feel a 36 month community order would be more appropriate as this would be both demanding and would benefit you and society in general.”

The Recorder ordered that Toomer attend 40 programme sessions to deal with his sexual issues and complete 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

Recorder Garlick also ordered the forfeiture and destruction of all three devices, subjected him to a five year sexual harm prevention order, limiting his use of the internet, and for him to sign the sex offenders’ register for the same time period.