June 2021

Face of ‘serial offender’ pervert who tried to seduce young girls online

This is the face of a paedophile who sent sexual messages to what he thought was a 12-year-old girl.

In reality, Lewis Watts’ messages encouraging the girl to send sexual pictures of herself to him were going to an undercover officer with West Midlands Police.

Watts, 26, of Saxelby Road, Melton, was already a registered sex offender when, in November last year, he began messaging a person on the social media platform Kik.

Messages were sent by Watts encouraging sexual activity and asking the ‘girl’ to send images of sexual acts.

But the account was actually being operated by undercover officers from the West Midlands force, who then notified the paedophile online investigation team, (POLIT) at Leicestershire Police.

A number of conversations also took place between Watts and other similar accounts – but they too were also all being operated by officers.

Watts had already been prosecuted in 2015 for accessing indecent images of children and three years later appeared in court for three breaches of a court order in relation to internet contact with a child under 16.

He then committed more breaches of the order, resulting in 12 months imprisonment.

Despite that, in the latest offences, Watts used a genuine photograph of himself and gave his real age on his account, so the investigation team were able to track his account and on December 22, POLIT officers took action.

Later that day, Watts attended Leicester’s Keyham Lane police station where he was arrested and was subsequently charged with a number of offences.

They were three counts of sexual communications with a child, attempting to incite a child under the age of 13 to engage in sexual activity and a breach of his sexual harm prevention order. He was remanded into custody.

Initially, he pleaded not guilty and was due to stand trial at Leicester Crown Court but changed his plea to guilty shortly before the trial was due to start.

He was sentenced to three years imprisonment