May 2021

Arrest warrant issued for Portuguese lodger who amassed over 9,500 indecent images of children while in Northampton

An arrest warrant has been issued for a Portuguese man who amassed over 9,500 indecent images of children while he was a lodger in Northampton.

Bruno Lopes, of Gaveto Da Rua in Apulia, returned home to Portugal following his arrest in 2017 after police traced the illegal online activity to an address in Gibson Lane.

But after wrongfully arresting the homeowner at first, officers were then informed the house had a lodger.

When Lopes arrived home, he confessed immediately and told police they would find what they were looking for on his computer.

Across four hard drives, investigators found at least 9,554 images and videos of the abusive material. Of those, 241 were classed as “category A”, the most serious classification under UK law.

Northampton Crown Court heard on Thursday (May 20) how Lopes’ computer also housed images of extreme violence and terrorism.

The 42-year-old lodger later told a probation team he had become “lonely and isolated” during his time in Northampton and he fell down a rabbit hole of depraved internet forums.

However, Lopes did not attend his sentencing despite a summons to court.

Now, following a sentence of eight months in jail in his absence, an arrest warrant has been issued for him to be taken to prison in Portugal.

Her Honour Judge Rebecca Crane said: “I see no grounds to suspend this sentence. There is no realistic prospect of rehabilitation and no strong personal mitigation.

“Mr Lopes denies an sexual interest in children. I reject this and find it not credible.”