June 2021

Man, 34, planned to have sex with a 14-year-old girl in a McDonald’s toilet – in sick texts he said: “I want to f*** a schoolgirl”

A pervert who was planning to meet with ’14-year-old girl’ to ‘have sex in a McDonald’s toilet’ was caught after being ensnared by a ‘paedophile hunter group’.

Mark Needham, 34, of Windrows, Skelmersdale, planned to meet a ’14-year-old’ he had been speaking to online, sending explicit pictures and pornographic videos of himself, and saying he wanted to have sex with a ‘schoolgirl’.

In messages to the ‘girl’, Needham said he wanted her to wear a short skirt for “easier access” to her underwear, and that he wanted to have sex with her in a McDonald’s toilet.

But Needham was really talking to a member of a paedophile hunter group, and was fooled into meeting the ‘girl’ at Liverpool Lime Street Station, where he was arrested.

Cheryl Mottram, prosecuting at Liverpool Crown Court, said a member of the ‘paedophile hunter group’ called “N-force for Justice” was posing as a 14-year-old girl called Darcy on an adult chat site called “Hi”.

Needham began speaking to the ‘girl’, who told him she was 14 and “still at school”.

Ms Mottram said the “chat continued and became increasingly sexual in nature”

Needham first sent a photo of himself and, after receiving a picture of the fake girl, he told her “I want to f*** a schoolgirl”.

He asked the ‘girl’ to perform a sex act on herself and when he was told she was with a friend suggested they had a “threesome”.

Ms Mottram said Needham sent “pornographic videos of himself” and sent photos of his genitalia.

He arranged to meet her on October 8 but said he’d changed his mind “due to her age”.

On December 12 the paedophile hunter group said the girl was “coming to Liverpool for the day”.

Needham agreed to meet her and when asked what they would be doing he told the ’14-year-old’ “s****ing you in Maccies toilet LOL”.

Members of the group travelled to Liverpool Lime Street Station and, when one woman pretended to be ‘Darcy’, Needham gave her a hug before they detained him and called police.

He told the group he had “planned to talk to her and take her to a hotel room” and he had “asked her if she would wear a short dress as it would ‘be easier to get access to her knickers'”.

He also told the group: “I have got no excuse for what I’ve done”.

In a police interview he confirmed he used chatrooms to talk to women and “liked to talk dirty to them” and “liked uniforms”.

He told police “it was the uniform that was the fantasy, not the age of the girl”.

The offences took place between November 24, 2017 and December 11 of the same year, prompting Judge David Aubrey, QC, to question why it took so long to come to court when he admitted the offences in a police interview.

Ms Mottram said there were various “requests” from police but added “what has been requested has not perhaps been necessary”.

Needham was charged with the offences in January this year.

The court heard Needham has previous convictions but “nothing of a sexual nature” and “nothing since 2013”.

Needham admitted attempting to incite a girl into sexual activity, attempting to meet a girl under 16 following grooming, attempting to engage in sexual communication with a child and attempting to cause a child to look at an image of sexual activity.

Judge Aubrey said the delay in the case was “unreasonable in the extreme” and “inexcusable” as Needham had admitted the offences in a police interview.

He took into account Needham had been in “no trouble whatsoever” since the offences had taken place.

Despite the mitigating features the judge said: “The appropriate punishment can only be achieved by a sentence of immediate custody.”

Judge Aubrey explained the sentence would have been three years, which was reduced to two years to reflect his guilty plea and reduced again by another year to reflect the delay.

As a result, Needham was jailed for one year.

He was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders Register for 10 years and adhere to a Sexual Harm Prevention order for the same period.

Following the sentence Judge Aubrey said the delay was “more than unsatisfactory, it was unnecessary” adding had it not been for the delay the sentence “would have been considerably longer”.