April 2021

Paedophile hunters confronted man at his home over online chats with ‘child’

Paedophile hunters confronted a Bestwood man on his doorstep over his sexualised chats with what he believed to be a 14-year-old girl on Facebook.

A member of the group had posed online as the child using a photograph with permission from a youngster the same age, Nottingham Crown Court heard

She told John Hyde she was 14 and he told her he was 29.

Requests from him to meet were made repeatedly. He sent phots of a naked upper torso saying it was him.

He sent her inappropriate pictures of his private area on three separate occasions.

He reminded her to log out of Facebook every night so she was not discovered in conversation with him.

Gregor Purcell, prosecuting, said he carried on the sexualised conversation at times and repeated he would like to meet up when she was older.

“He was confronted by a paedophile hunter group at his home address and police were called,” added Mr Purcell.

Hyde, now 31, of Leybourne Drive, pleaded guilty to attempting to communicate with a child under the Sexual Offences Act.

Hyde, who is unemployed, was told by Judge Stuart Rafferty QC: “You are 31, and interested in children, and don’t pretend that you are not because it won’t wash”.

He said Hyde was propositioning a child on the internet in “filthy terms” for your own sexual gratification.

“Fortunately for you, you had not taken the next step, because you could not since she was not a child but an adult,” added the judge. “You encouraged her, believing her to be a child, in a way that was best described as wholly inappropriate”.

He said if the child had been real, Hyde would be going to prison.

He imposed a 15-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, and a two-year community order with a condition to attend an accredited sex offender programme for up to 90 days.

He will be on a sexual harm prevention order for five years, must sign the sex offenders’ register and complete 25 rehabilitation activity days.